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CA investigating “deplorable” conditions at Half Moon Bay farms following mass shooting

Photo courtesy of Ray Mueller, San Mateo County District 3 Supervisor

HALF MOON BAY, Calif. (KION-TV)- Governor Gavin Newsom said California would begin investigating the farms involved in the Half Moon Bay mass shooting that took the lives of seven farm workers and injured another farm worker. All the victims were Asian and Hispanic migrant workers living on the farm.

Governor Newsom met with farm workers on Tuesday and spoke with them about their living conditions and hourly wages.

A statement from the Governor's Office said that workers at the farm were "being paid $9 an hour and living in shipping containers." The conditions were described as "simply deplorable."

The state will investigate the farms to ensure workers are treated fairly and with the compassion they deserve.

Many workers have no choice but to tolerate the conditions provided to them by their employers. Our Country relies on their back-breaking work, yet Congress cannot even provide them the stability of raising their families and working in this country without fear of deportation, which contributes to their vulnerability in the workplace. That is no way to live.

Office of the Governor of California
Untis were farm workers stay. Photo courtesy of Ray Mueller, San Mateo County District 3 Supervisor

Cal/OHSA and the Labor Commissioner’s office are looking into potential labor and workplace safety and health violations at the sites of the shootings, according to Deputy Secretary for the Office of the Governor Daniel Villaseñor.

On Thursday, San Mateo County Supervisor for District 3 Ray Mueller visited the farms where the mass shooting occurred. He called the farm worker's housing "Deplorable, heartbreaking living conditions."

Mueller said the one-room dwellings had no insulation or running water, and have outdoor cooking stoves. Mueller said, "I spoke with one farm worker today who said she slept with flood waters from the storms on the floor in her unit while she slept."

Outdoor kitchen at one of the farms. Photo courtesy of Ray Mueller, San Mateo County District 3 Supervisor

Another farm worker told him that the first time she had seen a doctor in the United States was Wednesday night at the shelter she was staying at due to the mass shooting. She has lived in the United States for three years, said Mueller.

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Ricardo Tovar

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