May 20, 2007

More Immigration News Old Media Thinks You Can’t Use: Swift Returns to Full Staffing Levels

If you believe the hype from the open-borders crowd about how illegal immigrants “are doing jobs other won’t do,” you would have to wonder how this ever happened (the following is from a May 11 company press release):

Swift & Company Announces Return of Standard Staffing Levels at All Four Domestic Beef Processing Facilities

Pork Processing Facilities Resumed Normal Production in March

Swift & Company today reported its return to standard staffing levels at all four domestic beef processing facilities after the detention and removal, on December 12, 2006, of approximately 950 Swift Beef employees by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) division.

The December 2006 ICE event also involved two Swift Pork processing facilities. As the Company announced on April 10, 2007, Swift’s domestic pork operations returned to normal levels in March 2007. ICE detained and removed a total of nearly 1,300 Swift Beef and Swift Pork employees during the December 2006 event.

A terse Associated Press story on the announcement that gained very little circulation made sure to remind us that “Operations at Swift plants in Colorado, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Texas and Hyrum, Utah, were suspended for several hours on Dec. 12 while immigration agents arrested 1,217 workers. No company managers have been charged.”

Somehow, AP “forgot” to tell us that, as reported by the Greeley, Colorado Tribune the previous week (requires free registration), that at just one of the facilities involved:

….. 261 warrants (were issued) for workers in Greeley who were using other people’s Social Security numbers or names to gain employment at Swift. It was unclear how the workers obtained those identities.

ICE discovered the identity thefts after victims from different parts of the country reported suspicious changes in their credit. Some people received Social Security statements that showed a history of employment at Swift, but the victims had never worked there.

Back to the main topic — How did Swift manage to find all those (presumably legal) workers? A One News Now story has what will be a “surprising” answer for the economic wing of the open-borders lobby:

Steve Elliot is president of Grassfire.org, an organizing center for conservative activists. He is calling the company’s achievement the “Swift Miracle.”

….. Swift had no problem finding people to fill the positions formerly held by illegal aliens, the Grassfire.org spokesman contends. “Just a few months after they were busted by government officials, they had no problem filling those positions with Americans who are willing to do those jobs and earn a living in the meat-packing industry,” he says.

Elliot insists the meat company’s story completely debunks the argument by advocates for open borders that the U.S. government must give amnesty to millions of illegal aliens in the country. “[T]his just blows holes in one of the biggest arguments of the amnesty agenda: that illegals are coming here to do jobs Americans won’t do,” he adds. “It’s simply not true,” he says; “Americans will do these jobs if given the opportunity.”

Thanks to the “Swift Miracle,” Eliot says, those who support the open borders/amnesty agenda can no longer use the jobs excuse to justify the flood of illegal immigrants into the U.S.

The filling of the Swift jobs is yet another against-the-grain immigration-related story that Old Media has downplayed. Yet it “somehow” has found the time and attention for:
- “Swift raids leave immigrant families separated”
- “Impact of Swift raid still being felt
- “Greeley mayor urges changes in ICE raids
- “Somali Workers Quit Over Prayer Dispute” (at a Swift plant)

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Note: An unexcerpted paragraph in the One News Now story contains claims by Elliot that “Swift is reporting in the company’s own quarterly report “that they are ‘up to normal production levels’ and that their operational and cost position has improved.”

Those claims are incorrect. The company’s related April 10 press release (PDF converted to HTML) says that “US Pork Operations (are) Back at Normal Levels …. (and) US Beef Operations (are) On Track to Return by Summer,” and only notes that “multiple operational and cost position improvements are under way, and we are beginning to realize the benefits of those programs.” No favorable or unfavorable comparison to the company’s previous cost position is made. Nothing in the 10-Q Quarterly report contradicts that statement in the press release.

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Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

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3 Comments

  1. NPR had a news story this morning on Swift and Greeley CO.

    The story focused on the impact on the families. The ICE was criticized for claiming their enforcement is suppose to be targeting criminals, e.g. drug dealers, and instead catching numerous law-abiding hard-working families in its net. An emphasis was made on the fact that while a person is going through ICE proceedings, they are allowed to stay in the US BUT NOT ALLOWED TO WORK. Therefore, many heads of household now have no income and families are relying on support from churches for food, etc. Although the head of household is, allegedly, an illegal and will be deported, the children are US citizens. Summary: (A) these illegal heads of household have no income and (B) they’re about to deported, so (C) they are signing custody agreements for care of their children if/when they are deported.

    The NPR reporter stated most agreements are for their US citizen children to stay with relatives who are here legally. This illustrates the importance of skills based immigration instead of family based. Chain family legal immigration appears to encourage additional illegal immigration.

    The ICE response/quote was that they should not be blamed for simply enforcing the law equally. Their intent IS to target criminals; but, if in the process of targeting criminals, they are become aware of other immigration law breakers, then ICE must apply the law equally. While the family situation has a sad element, this was the CHOICE of the PARENTS.

    (This link is the only thing I could find on the internet: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=8895914 . Maybe a transcript or audio of this morning’s NPR story will show up in a day or two.)

    Sidebar #1: Greeley CO is north of the urban belt: Longmont/Boulder-Denver-ColoradoSprings. During some of the first immigration demonstrations, many may remember that students replaced a US flag with a Mexican one at a Texas high school. This also occurred at a Longmont high school kids in Boulder County.
    http://gatewaypundit.blogspot.com/2006/04/more-us-flag-banning-cases-reported.html

    Sidebar #2: A theory: Many illegals arrived in Colorado during the technology boom, and thus a construction boom, of the 1990s. The construction industry labor is down due to both the technology bust and the drought; therefore, it is logical that some construction labor move north to the Greeley factory. It would be interesting to know the median number of years these illegal workers were employees at the Swift factory.

    Comment by Cornfed — May 21, 2007 @ 9:11 am

  2. #1, based on your sidebar theory, you would think that many of them were there quite a while.

    Comment by TBlumer — May 21, 2007 @ 9:19 am

  3. Americans: “Doing the Jobs Americans Won’t Do”…

    Just think what the unemployment rate among Americans would be if they had the opportunity to do “other jobs they won’t do.” Posted from Newsbusters:If you believe the hype from the open-borders crowd about how illegal immigrants “are doing jobs…

    Trackback by Robert B. Steely, MSgt, USAF — May 21, 2007 @ 9:50 am

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