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article imageShirley Sherrod accused of exploiting 'poor black workers' in 70s

By Andrew Moran     Aug 4, 2010 in Politics
Atlanta - Former United States Department of Agriculture employee Shirley Sherrod has been accused of having improper labor practices of "poor black farm workers" on her plantation by paying low wages and working long hours with little breaks during the 1970s.
Last month, Georgia State Director of Rural Development for the United States Department of Agriculture, Shirley Sherrod, was forced to resign after blogger Andrew Breitbart published excerpts of a speech she delivered at a NAACP event in March 2010. Sherrod was accused of being racist towards a white farmer, which was later found to be false.
One month later, Sherrod is once again being accused of racism by having “improper labor practices against black farm workers” during the 1970s on her Georgian agricultural plantation, according to the National Center for Public Policy Research.
California State University professor, Ron Wilkins, published an article on the political publication Counter Punch, which alleged that Sherrod and her husband, Charles, assisted in the management of New Communities Inc. in Albany, Georgia where “These individuals under-paid, mistreated and fired black laborers–many of them less than 16 years of age–in the same fields of southwest Georgia where their ancestors suffered under chattel slavery.”
Wilkins further continued in the article that the young and old farm employees worked long hours, were given little breaks, received sixty-seven cents per hour and those who were not satisfied with their positions were immediately fired.
This latest accusation is forcing members of Project 21, an organization identified as black conservatives, to speak out about the allegations, which they explain, they are shocked and demand justice.
“There has been a mighty effort by liberals to present Shirley Sherrod as a victim -- even a saint-like figure,” said Project 21 member and former executive director of the Greater Los Angeles chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference Joe R. Hicks. “However, after revelations that her husband, Charles, is an anti-white bigot and that she adheres to class warfare politics, it's now being alleged that Ms. Sherrod presided over the crass exploitation of poor black workers on a southwest Georgia agricultural 'plantation.’”
Media fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, Deroy Murdock, stated that he is shocked to see a political figure who fights for civil rights being accused of having involvement in the harsh treatment of black workers.
“Once again, those on the right are supposed to be the 'bad guys' who make life difficult for black Americans. Yet here we have Shirley Sherrod, hailed as a black civil rights leader, allegedly taking advantage of poor black Americans, keeping them poor and firing those who complain about mistreatment.”
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