Monday, April 04, 2005

Injury and Death, The Lot of the Poor

Thanks to Bob Herbert for his comments on the stadium.
Also in today's New York Times there is a report about the terrible experiences that one can encounter at Rikers. In case you're not familiar with the basics, Rikers is a JAIL, which means a place that people are held before they go to court. While some people are actually given sentences to be in jail, most of the people who are there are those who have not been convicted of any crime. If you look at this story, it's unclear whether David Pennington, 27, whose suicide was one of 23 deaths in NY jails, had been convicted of any crime.

The NYT also has an article commemorating the 1980 transit strike. The key issues, according to the Times were management's response to a call for a 10%-15% wage increase with an offer of 6% over two years. The result of the strike was an 8%-9% wage increase. What were the non-economic issues at stake, I wonder. OK, transit union experts...perhaps you have more details on strike gone by?
And speaking of commemorations, there was an memorial to the victims of the Triangle Fire last week. Gvven that the names of the victims were put on the walls of their former homes, mostly on the Lower East Side, it may have been a reminder to present-day yuppies of the history of their playground and living space.

When I think of the Triangle Fire, I'm reminded of the factory fire that occurred in North Carolina in 1991, which is commemorated in this four year old notice by the ufcw, and described more vividly in this 2003 article from the Christian Science Monitor.
For an update on the Bush administration's record of health and safety laws, go check out this afl-cio record, which notes the 50,000 occupational deaths of workers every year. If you are interested in the number of people killed this week, I recommend reading the weekly toll, which appears on the blog, "Confined Space."
Continuing in the same morbid vein, may I suggest reading George Orwell's essay, How the Poor Die.

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