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Houston Packaging Facility Under Federal Investigation After Workers Allege Extreme Abuse By Employer

For Immediate Release
Contact: Christine Bolaños, (512)466-9258, christine@christopher

HOUSTON – Workers Defense strongly believes that global packaging corporation US
Merchants is profiting off worker exploitation after nine workers came forward with
claims of alleged abuse at its Houston-area facility. Workers filed claims of extreme
abuse that include sexual harassment, cardiac arrhythmia, blood clots, and other health
complications, including ignoring a doctor’s note regarding a cancer patient and
neglecting medical care that led to a woman suffering a miscarriage.

The claims are under investigation by the National Labor Relations Board and have also
captured the attention of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Workers
Defense, along with its allies, support workers’ demand that US Merchants stop the
alleged labor abuse practices, stop retaliation against workers for organizing, and
denounces sexual harassment and psychological abuse of workers. All workers deserve
a safe workplace and we believe it is our duty to hold exploitative corporations like US
Merchants accountable.

“Immigrant workers are not machines, we are the backbone of Texas’ economy,” said
Workers Defense member Sofia Rodriguez, who worked at the facility for three years.
“They may try to silence us and harm us by treating us as less than human, like dirt, but
I’m here to tell you that they underestimate us. We will not remain silent. We will be loud
until there is change at US Merchants and public officials hold the corporation
accountable for these inhumane actions.”

Today, workers and advocates will rally outside the packaging facility of US Merchants,
and give notice to the company and the community that it is under investigation. They
will make several demands including that US Merchants end the hostile and dangerous
work environment that has impacted dozens of its workers and encourage other
workers to come forward if they have also experienced workplace abuse.

What: Workers will demand that US Merchants end abusive and inhumane
working conditions at its Houston facility
When: Today, Wednesday, November 15th at 11am CST
Where: 10610 Telge Rd, Houston, TX 77095

Who: US Merchants employees, Workers Defense, United We Dream, Texas
Organizing Project

Reporters covering this event should RSVP to Workers Defense Communications
Director Christine Bolaños by 9 am today at or at


Workers Defense Action Fund is a statewide organization dedicated to empowering
low-wage workers and immigrants across Texas to pass policies and support
candidates that address injustices in their communities.