Slave Worker System Exposed
Mainstream Media Ignores It

When I saw a story come through my email a few days ago about Hershey Chocolate company, I made a note to read it, but I really didn't want to read or hear anything about Hershey.  In 2007, when they closed their factories in the United States, laying off thousands of American workers, to move their production facilities to COMMUNIST China and Socialist India, I wrote off Hershey as a traitor corporation to America.  After a lifetime of being a loyal and frequent Hershey customer, I swore I'd never buy another Hershey product.  And I haven't.

I finally got around to reading the story and lo and behold, there was a "labor action" at Hershey's facility in Pennsylvania.  Since the story I got was from the SEIU, I wanted to find a story in the mainstream media.  I couldn't find one.  I found old stories from a 2002 strike in mainstream publications.  But nothing on the current strike.  I did find the story on a couple of left leaning websites, Alternet and Huffington Post and one on the Economic Policy Institute website. It's not surprising that the mainstream didn't report the story because the details of the strike reveal the slave system that has been established through the university system that is flying under the heading of education and "work-based learning". 

The Hershey company "workers" who went on strike are foreign students in the United States on
J-1 Visas
.  From an article on Huffington Post:

"The students had come to the U.S. on J-1 visas for the summer to experience America and improve their English. Instead, they claim they ended up working stressful full-time jobs for a sub-contractor at the plant in exchange for meager pay. Several of the students said they each paid between $3,000 and $6,000 to come to the U.S., and that after their housing costs were deducted they were taking home between $40 and $140 per week."

Although the students worked at a plant handling Hershey Company products, a Hershey spokesperson referred questions this week to the company that runs the plant, Exel Inc. A spokesperson from Exel in turn referred HuffPost to the company that supplies the labor, SHS Staffing Solutions. And an SHS spokesperson referred HuffPost to the non-profit that handled the students' visas, the Council for Educational Travel, USA, or CETUSA.

"Obviously, we want every student to experience a meaningful cultural exchange during their visit," CETUSA CEO Rick Anaya said. "If that is not the case, we will attempt to work with the students to see what can be done in the limited time they have left in their visits."

...Most of the students are set to return to their native countries within the coming weeks, Boykewich said. The students mostly hail from countries in Asia and Eastern Europe, including China, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Poland, and Romania.

Kevin Connolly, a spokesman for labor supplier SHS, said that CETUSA handled the students' housing arrangements. Boykewich said the workers each paid around $400 per month for housing -- a significant cost for many of them -- and that the $3,000 to $6,000 fees they paid to have their J-1 visas processed through CETUSA was a "huge" sacrifice for students coming from developing countries. He also said many of them will not ultimately earn back the money they shelled out to work in the U.S.

I did a search on Exel to see who they are since I wasn't familiar with the name.   It turns out that Exel is a British Corporation -  actually, a corporation of corporations similar to the way the COMMUNIST Chinese set up their corporations.  (Scroll down for Americas Leadership)   Interestingly, Exel bills themselves as a logistics corporation. 

I also did a search on SHS Staffing.  I finally found their corporate website but they have such a big presence on Internet, it wasn't easy.  It so was big in fact, that I printed out the search so that you can see how many references there are for SHS Staffing.   And the corporate website doesn't even have information about the company.  You have to follow the link about one of their service lines - "On Site Solutions" to find the CEO of the corporation.  His name is John Zentgraf.  

There is a CorporateWiki page on John Zentgraf that shows a connection to Wharton Investments.  Naturally, I'm on the trail so I did a search on Wharton Investments.  They don't have a sterling reputation.  There are lots of entries about a fraud case where they bilked investors from the Philippines out of $65 million. Notice in the article in the New York Times, they don't mention Wharton:

Investment Advisor Admits $65 Million Fraud Against Her Clients    But the SEC press release did mention them.

Nice people don't you think?  Great way to introduce young people to the United States. 

This blog has an interesting statistic in an article titled, Whattaya Mean This Ain't No Cultural Exchange?

This major international embarrassment brought a belated and tepid response from the State Department that they were looking into it—about what can be expected from the moribund Obama administration (MOA) these days on any issue, large or small. Palmyra is, sad to say, just the tip of the iceberg. The J-1 program has grown from 28,000 to 350,000 students a year over the past half-century—most of them put to work at tasks just as menial and exploitive as the ones at the Kit-Kat factory.

Imagine—350,000 jobs a year in this economy. Just what State is doing taking all these paychecks, however miniscule, away from American workers at all in these depression days is the real question—although fortunately for the MOA, Republicans’ overriding antipathy toward any sort of worker rights has kept them from exploiting the whole mess.

So you need not wonder why unemployment in the United States is so high.  It's because importing cheap labor under devious and deceptive means is too easy and too profitable. 

Vicky Davis
August 28, 2011