“Wages for meat packers were a lot higher years ago before companies started replacing Americans with illegal aliens. Of course, once wages dropped from $25/hr with benefits to as little as $8/hr and no bennies Americans stopped applying for those jobs. That’s why companies can complain Americans don’t want to work hard; they can’t handle these jobs. Of course that’s BS. Americans don’t want jobs that don’t pay them enough to survive…especially when they know their fathers and grandfathers often did these same work for much higher pay. New jobs this plant start $12/ hr. Still not close to $25 but keep rounding up illegals and those wages will rise so companies can fill the slots.”
About 25 to 30 people showed up to apply for jobs at Koch Foods’ nearby poultry processing plant. Of those, about an equal number were black, white or Latino.
The company, one of four whose plants in small Mississippi towns were targeted by federal immigration officials on Wednesday, contacted the state employment agency the same day to request its help in hiring workers.
Kamerio Whitley, a resident of the nearby town of Morton, spoke to reporters after he left the building. He said there were several positions available at the plant, including forklift operators.
Whitley said he applied for a job working at the plant’s rehang table, where workers hang frozen chickens.
The job starts at $12 an hour, which is decent pay for the area, Whitley said.
“That’s not bad to start, and it can always go up,” he said.
Joseph Butler said he, too, found the wages attractive. He also said he liked the fact that Koch Foods pays weekly.
Bell said MDES puts all applicants through the federal government’s E-Verify system. All job applicants were required to have two forms of identification and a Social Security card.
It remains unclear how so many workers without proper paperwork got jobs at the chicken plants in the first place.
NOTE: Almost half of those arrested (300) have been released from custody and given court dates.