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Labor broker charded with human trafficking Posted by on

An interesting twist in prosecuting immigrant-exploiting labor brokers. The US Attorney's office has charged a Kansas City based firm--Giant Labor Solutions--under RICO for their treatment of hundreds of workers in multiple states.

"Giant Labor and two other metro-area companies turned the workers into slaves, fanning them out to housekeeping jobs in hotels and other businesses in 14 states while forcing them to live, sometimes eight at a time, in small apartments for which they were charged exorbitant rent, federal authorities allege. Most of the workers were in the country illegally and were threatened with deportation."

"...Used false IDs to create the companies and open dozens of bank accounts for them, prosecutors said. The workers, who were mainly from the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and the Philippines, paid thousands of dollars ?? often taking out loans in their home countries ?? for Giant Labor to bring them to the U.S. and get them temporary visas, authorities said. But once they arrived, the workers were stuck in small, sparsely furnished apartments, had no access to their mail and were charged so many fees that they were sometimes told on payday they owed the company money."

The rich get...not so rich Posted by on

A New York Times piece from last week takes a look at the difficulty the recession has people. The rich are not quite so rich, it seems. They are, however, still much wealthier than the rest of the nation. And while the article focuses on the "hard times" of millionaires like John McAfee, who has been forced to sell not just his Hawaii mansion, but his New Mexico one as well, income inequality is not something that's leaving America anytime soon.

Few economists expect the country to return to the relatively flat income distribution of the 1950s and 1960s. Indeed, they say that inequality is likely to remain significantly greater than it was for most of the 20th century...Market forces that have increased inequality, like globalization, are also not going away.

Final section of exterior walls framed out Posted by on

With the fire proofing of the steel beams complete, the trailer that held the mixing and spraying apparatus has been removed from the site. This allowed for crews to begin framing out the exterior walls on northwest side of the third floor.

This type of framing is called fly-by framing. The framing is moved off of the concrete floor and is attached to the side of the concrete beam using specially designed and engineered clips to attach the metal framing.

The dimples and rectangular stamp design give the clip added strength. All of the exterior walls have been framed out using this fly-by technique.