Gulf Coast Guest Workers Launch Hunger Strike for Justice
In the wake of the devastation wrought by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, hundreds of thousands of people, left without jobs or homes, were forced to leave the Gulf Coast and begin new lives elsewhere. Over the next two and a half years, the government and its agencies proved ineffective at revitalizing Gulf Coast communities. The massive displacement which had initially been viewed as temporary gradually assumed the aspect of a permanent "Katrina/Rita diaspora."
Meanwhile, Signal International, a company with shipyards in hurricane-affected coastal areas of Texas
and Mississippi, claimed that it could find no willing or able workers to hire. While the government
continued to fail to bring Gulf Coast residents home and back to work, the United States Bureau of
Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approved Signal to bring in guest workers from other
countries. In late 2006, Signal hired a labor recruiting firm called "Global Resources" to find workers in
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