Employee Bonus: Teens Working for Monsanto Sprayed by Crop Duster

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Remember when farm work was a wholesome summer job for kids looking for a little extra pocket money?

Back in the day, teens could work outside, learn about farming, and do some healthy physical labor without major health risks.  Working on a farm built physical strength, skills, and character.

Now, with the advent of toxic agricultural practices, farm work can be deadly because of exposure to glyphosate and other deadly chemicals.

Nearly 80 teenagers working for Team Corn, a Princeton, Ill.-based company that contracts for Monsanto were sent to the hospital yesterday after a crop-duster sprayed the field they were working in with fungicide.

The teenagers were detasseling corn when the chemical drifted over them from a plane that was crop-dusting an adjacent field, said Tom Helscher, a spokesman for Monsanto, the St. Louis-based company using the field to produce seed corn. Pesotum is about 15 miles south of Urbana….

…Detasselers – commonly teenagers looking for summer jobs – pull the pollinating tassels off the top of corn plants that will produce seed for future planting…

…The 79 teens were decontaminated by firefighters at the field just outside Pesotum and then taken to the Carle Foundation Hospital’s emergency room in Urbana to be treated for what appeared to be minor ailments, hospital officials said.

Emergency room director Allen Rinehart said some of the teen workers had irritated skin but that they were all stable and being released to their parents as they were seen. (source)

The media glossed over the incident, emphasizing that the injuries were minor and that the kids were treated and immediately released from the hospital.

There is no doubt this was an unfortunate accident. As long as agriculture practices these highly toxic methods, though, we will continue to see such accidents. There would be no such risk of poisoning on a farm that implemented organic methods.

But considering that people spraying for Monsanto are generally pictured wearing head to toe protection as well as a respirator, and that reported health issues from chemical drift are severe, including cancer, miscarriage, asthma and birth defects, one has to wonder if the real injuries to these teens will show up a few years down the road.

With this direct exposure, will these kids join the long line of victims of Monsanto?

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Daisy Luther is a freelance writer and editor.  Her website, The Organic Prepper, offers information on healthy prepping, including premium nutritional choices, general wellness and non-tech solutions. You can follow Daisy on Facebook and Twitter, and you can email her at daisy@theorganicprepper.ca

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10 Comments  to  Employee Bonus: Teens Working for Monsanto Sprayed by Crop Duster

  1. KY Mom says:

    Daisy,

    That is horrible! There was no mention of this in the news here.

    I agree, problems may arise for these kids in the future.

    Thank you for for keeping us informed!

    Take care!
    KY Mom

  2. Kimo says:

    My grandmother was poisoned by crop duster, said it went in her feet, she died of cancer.

  3. The Thinker says:

    What goes aroundup comes aroundup.

  4. The Thinker says:

    What goes aroundup comes aroundup.

  5. Jolly Roger says:

    Well if they were working for Monsanto, they got what they deserved, and I hope they die.

    I don’t know who these “team corn” people are, but since they’re Monsanto contractors, we’re better off without them too.

    • Knot Jammin, Jr. says:

      Jolly, Your one sick individual. These were kids that probably have know idea of what Monsanto is and how they will effect their future. ” You hope they die”!! You are really sick. You wish death on these kids rather than taking this opportunity to educate them and use them to help spread the truth about Monsanto. You are the worst kid of person. An ignorant piece of garbage.

      • Parent says:

        I am a parent of two of the kids. How dare you wish death upon anyone. You are just like the people you are complaining about. These kids are between the ages of 13-18. They just wanted to make some extra cash for the summer instead of sitting on the rear ends playing games. I am proud of my two children for wanting to work and around here detasseling is the only thing they can really do. Thanks to everyone else who are concerned it is appreciated

        • Daisy Luther says:

          Dear Parent:

          I am incredibly sorry that you had to read this thoughtless comment on my website. Please let me know if there is anything else I can do to spread the word about what happened to your kids.

          Best wishes

          Daisy

    • Daisy Luther says:

      Jolly Roger:

      I am really disappointed to read your comment about these kids and I am hoping that you didn’t mean to be so harsh and judgemental. These are not adults who are well-versed in world politics and Big Agri – these are kids, taking what is likely the only job available to them in a small community. As a mom, I cannot imagine wishing death upon someone else’s children.

      Without compassion, we are just as bad as those who would poison our food.

      Daisy

    • Nicole F. says:

      AS THE PARENT OF ONE OF THE KIDS THAT HAPPENED TO BE IN THAT FIELD THAT DAY, YOU ARE A TOTAL FUCKING IDIOT!! HOW DARE YOU SAY THAT MY SON NEEDS TO DIE!!! HE WAS EARNING SOME MONEY BY LEARNING WORK ETHICS AND HAVING FUN WITH FRIENDS!!! AND TO ADD TO THAT, MYSELF AND MANY OTHER PARENTS HAVE HIRED AN ATTORNEY TO FIND OUT WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED AND WHAT THE LONG TERM EFFECTS OF THIS CHEMICAL ARE.

      THAT BEING SAID, HAVE A GREAT FUCKING LIFE AND LETS HOPE THAT YOU OR ANYONE IN YOUR FAMILY DOESN’T GET THEIR BRAKE LINES CUT ON THEIR VEHICLES! YOU SICK INDIVIDUAL!

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