A booming disaster-restoration Industry is capitalizing on low-wage immigrant labor as climate change accelerates natural catastrophes. Workers in this industry, who clear debris and rebuild after hurricanes, floods, and wildfires, are exposed to harmful toxins like mold, asbestos, and lead. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has ignored research on workplace safeguards and prioritizes fast recovery over worker health. Many restoration workers suffer from debilitating health issues long after leaving cleanup jobs. The industry relies heavily on working-age and undocumented migrants from Latin America and the Caribbean who have fled poverty, violence, and natural disasters in their homelands.
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