Swift & Company, the world’s second largest producer of fresh beef and pork products, has been offering signing bonuses of up to $1,500 to new employees to compete with a tight labor market in Greeley which boasts a 3.7 percent unemployment rate.
The Greeley Tribune speculated that the bonuses were offered to lure local workers to the plant due to concerns about the legal status of Swift’s current workforce. Fernando Rodriquez, union director for the United Food and Commercial Workers Local No. 7 told the Tribune in an article published on Friday that some Swift employees were “placed out” by the company without cause because of suspicions they were hired with false documentation.
“I could tell you that we do not have one documented case, not one peep of evidence that one person is illegal,” Rodriquez said. “Everyone that’s gone through the system has filed grievances. People have been placed out. Basically, our contract says they have to show just cause. … We’re asking why the company is doing what they’re doing.”