Center for Political Awareness

Major Brands Like McDonald’s, Kroger and Coca-Cola Linked to Forced Prison Labor

“Slavery has not been abolished,” said one formerly imprisoned person who now advocates against forced prison labor. (Click image for article.)

A supervised work crew of female jail prisoners fills sandbags in preparation for the arrival of Hurricane Dorian in Florida on August 29, 2019. Paul Hennessy / Sopa Images / Lightrocket via Getty Images 

 

A sprawling new investigation has found that forced prison labor feeds into the supply chains of a wide and dizzying range of food and grocery companies, ranging from small local brands and restaurants to major conglomerates like Tyson, Coca-Cola and Kroger.

The two-year Associated Press investigation, published Monday, found that widespread abuse of prison workers has become a multibillion dollar industry due to partnerships between prisons, corporations and lawmakers. While prisoners, often forced to work, make pennies on the dollar or sometimes no money at all while facing physical and mental abuse on the job, states, prisons and companies make tens of millions of dollars of profits.

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