A federal complaint has been filed against Wayne Farms, which has been accused of subjecting workers at its poultry processing plant in Enterprise, Ala., to dangerous and abusive conditions. The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) filed a complaint against Wayne Farms with the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) on behalf of nine people who are either current or former Wayne Farms workers.

Alan Sterling, director of marketing for Wayne Farms, told al.com the company is still in the process of reviewing the SPLC filing against Wayne Farms and has yet to determine whether it has any merit. “Wayne Farms takes any situation or allegations regarding our employees, our customers and our communities where we work very seriously,” Sterling said. “It would be premature and inappropriate for us to comment on a matter that is still in the earliest stages of review and may or may not culminate into a formal investigation.”


SPLC alleges one plant worker, Beatriz Navedo, had suffered a heart attack on the job, but the nurse at the plant only gave Navedo aspirin and did not call the hospital. When Navedo’s daughter, who also works at the plant, left her shift early to take her mother to the hospital, both were punished, according to SPLC. Wayne Farms also requires its workers to pay the company for some of their protective equipment and denies them reasonable access to the restroom, alleges SPLC.