Monday, April 12, 2004

Hispanic Worker Deaths Up North in Indiana

There have been recent articles about the deaths of immigrant workers in North Carolina, South Carolina and Florida. Now we move north to Indiana:
Guillermo Sanchez came to Indiana in pursuit of a better life -- the jobs and opportunities that attracted millions of other immigrants before him.
But for the 23-year-old native of Mexico -- and a growing number of other Hispanic workers in Indiana -- the American dream turned into a deadly nightmare.

Sanchez died Monday of head injuries sustained March 26 when a bundle of steel knocked him to the ground at Westfield Steel in Hamilton County.

Since 1998, at least 30 other Hispanics -- most of them natives of Mexico -- have died on the job in Indiana, according to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics and data gathered by The Indianapolis Star. While Hispanics accounted for 3.5 percent of the state's population in 2002, the most recent year for which worker fatality statistics are available, they made up 7 percent of workplace deaths.