H2 Worker Documentary. Legal Slavery.

H2 Worker Documentary. Legal Slavery.

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Here is your music!

To everyone running for President:

Tonight I watched this incredible documentary by Stephanie Black.

Before they had harvesting machines every year people 10,000 Caribbean men were  selectivity chosen by American sugar corporations to harvest sugar cane for six months in Florida under temporary “H2” visas.
They came from Jamaica in the middle of the night and put in barracks in Belle Glade.

“If we didn’t have the Jamaicans it wouldn’t get harvested because the local people wouldn’t do it.” One of the sugar field managers said. They were essential jailed. Brought from the barrack to the bus to the field to bus to the barrack and not being allowed to leave.
They got paid one dollar and few cents pr hour.

This was released in 1990.

Even before the Duke and Duchess of Windsor (Who used to hang out in Indiantown) sent workers from their Islands in the Bahamas.

“H-2 Worker is a controversial expose of the travesty of justice that takes place around the shores of Florida’s Lake Okeechobee—a situation which, until the film’s release, has been one of America’s best-kept secrets. There, for six months a year, over 10,000 men from Jamaica and other Caribbean islands perform the brutal task of cutting sugar cane by hand-a job so dangerous and low-paying that Americans refuse to do it.

H-2 Worker is the first documentary to tell the story of these men—named for their special temporary guestwork “H-2” visas. They live and work in conditions reminiscent of the days of slavery on sugar plantations: housed in overcrowded barracks, poorly fed, denied adequate treatment for their frequent on-the-job injuries, paid less than minimum wage, and deported if they do not do exactly as they are told.

The sugar plantations who employ the H-2 workers sustain this exploitation—and their own profits—with the help of the U.S. government, which authorizes the importation of Third World workers while it blocks the importation of cheaper Third World sugar through a system of quotas and price supports, citing “national security” as the reason for its costly subsidizing of a domestic sugar industry. The scandal of the H-2 program has existed for over 45 years. It began in 1942, when the U.S. Sugar Cane Corporation was indicted for conspiracy to enslave black American workers. In 1943 the first West Indian cane cutters were brought in. This scandal has largely been kept out of the public eye, and the sugar companies and their government supporters have escaped accountability. On the contrary, a new immigration law has paved the way for a rapid expansion of the H-2 program.

Directed by: Stephanie Black
Produced by: Stephanie Black
Released: 1990
Running Time: 70 min

For more information about this film and other films in the Collective Eyes Catalog, please visit: collectiveeye.org/products/h2-worker

AWARDS:

Grand Jury Prize Best Documentary – Sundance Film Festival (1990)
Best Cinematography, Sundance Film Festival (1990)
Quotes

“‘H-2 Worker’ is that rare hybrid that succeeds as both film and advocacy. The documentary’s look and form is smooth and sophisticated … [and] it solidly frames issues about the economy, employment and the treatment of workers who seem just steps away from slavery.” —The New York Times
With admirable fluency, Black combines straightforward information and analysis with more evocative glimpses of the workers’ lives …. Black and her collaborators have an unsentimental conviction that these workers are fully human, that they experience not just anger and suffering but also love and pleasure – and even hope.”—The Nation”

Today when you go to Belle Glade you drive past the same buildings that were in this film.

Slave Barracks.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H-2_Worker

“H-2 Worker is a 1990 documentary film about the exploitation of Jamaican guest workers in Florida‘s sugar cane industry. It was directed by Stephanie Black, and won the Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize for documentaries in the 1990 festival.[1] It was shot in Belle Glade, Clewiston, and Okeelanta, Florida as well as Jamaica and includes cane fields and worker camps (Ritta Village, Prewitt Village) owned by US Sugar Corporation and the Okeelanta Corporation.

The cane harvesters were brought in to perform the autumn harvest of sugar cane under the H-2A Visa program. The Jamaicans replaced earlier generations of Bahamian seasonal workers who in turn replaced migrant labor recruited from the Cotton Belt (region) in the first half of the 20th century. A documentary short that accompanies the DVD version of the film states that human labor was abandoned for mechanical harvesters in 1992.

The film features interviews with a United States Department of Labor official, a Florida Sugar Cane League official, Jamaican Prime Minister Michael Manley, local merchants, and a dozen or so field workers. It also includes footage of César Chávez, US Representative Thomas Downey, and US Senator Bill Bradley.”

I think it’s important for “us” ( and you know who I’m referring to) to watch this so we never get soft against the people who created these human rights abuses for corporate profit. Not only do they treat people like slaves they collect corporate welfare.

( Are we calling them corporate entitlements yet?)

It’s also important for those of you that think all these people are coming and taking your jobs away. The reason they have, yes I said have this program is to to the work no one else would do. Interesting enough when I worked in Boca in the hospital we got nurses from England and from the Philippines and there were plenty of nurses around to do the job.  It’s been here since the 40’s. So even at your work you may have H2 workers or even the hospital you go to when your ill.

They may even be hiding your bed.
http://www.uscis.gov/working-united-states/temporary-workers/h-2a-agricultural-workers/h-2a-temporary-agricultural-workers

H-2A Temporary Agricultural WorkersThe H-2A program allows U.S. employers or U.S. agents who meet specific regulatory requirements to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary agricultural jobs. A U.S. employer,a U.S. agent as described in the regulations,or an association of U.S. agricultural producers named as a joint employer must file Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, on a prospective worker’s behalf.

Who May Qualify for H-2A Classification?

To qualify for H-2A nonimmigrant classification, the petitioner must:

  • Offer a job that is of a temporary or seasonal nature.
  • Demonstrate that there are not sufficient U.S. workers who are able, willing, qualified, and available to do the temporary work.
  • Show that the employment of H-2A workers will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers.
  • Generally, submit with the H-2A petition, a single valid temporary labor certification from the U.S. Department of Labor.  (A limited exception to this requirement exists in certain “emergent circumstances.”  See e.g., 8 CFR 214.2(h)(5)(x) for specific details.)

H-2A Program Process

  • Step 1: Petitioner submits temporary labor certification application to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).  Prior to requesting H-2A classification from USCIS, the petitioner must apply for and receive a temporary labor certification for H-2A workers with DOL. For further information regarding the temporary labor certification requirements and process, see the Foreign Labor Certification, Department of Labor page.
  • Step 2:  Petitioner submits Form I-129 to USCIS.  After receiving a temporary labor certification for H-2A employment from DOL, the employer should file Form I-129 with USCIS. With limited exceptions, the original temporary labor certification must be submitted as initial evidence with Form I-129.  (See the instructions to Form I-129 for additional filing requirements.)
  • Step 3: Prospective workers outside the United States apply for visa and/or admission.  After USCIS approves Form I-129, prospective H-2A workers who are outside the United States must:
    •  Apply for an H-2A visa with the U.S. Department of State (DOS) at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad, then seek admission to the United States with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) at a U.S. port of entry; or
    • Directly seek admission to the United States in H-2A classification with CBP at a U.S. port of entry, if a worker does not require a visa.

You can order it thru amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/video/detail/B003PLC5PY?ie=UTF8&*Version*=1&*entries*=0

I got mine from Netflix.

Here is another review.

http://www.reggaeplanet.com/p/h2-worker/

“H-2 Worker is the first documentary to tell the story of these men – named for their special temporary guestwork “H-2” visas. They live and work in conditions reminiscent of the days of slavery on sugar plantations: housed in overcrowded barracks, poorly fed, denied adequate treatment for their frequent on-the-job injuries, paid less than minimum wage, and deported if they do not do exactly as they are told.
The sugar plantations who employ the H-2 workers sustain this exploitation – and their own profits – with the help of the U.S. government, which authorizes the importation of Third World workers while it blocks the importation of cheaper Third World sugar through a system of quotas and price supports, citing “national security” as the reason for its costly subsidizing of a domestic sugar industry.
The scandal of the H-2 program has existed for over 45 years. It began in 1942, when the U.S. Sugar Cane Corporation was indicted for conspiracy to enslave black American workers. In 1943 the first West Indian cane cutters were brought in. This scandal has largely been kept out of the public eye, and the sugar companies and their government supporters have escaped accountability. On the contrary, a new immigration law has paved the way for a rapid expansion of the H-2 program to other agricultural industries.
H-2 Worker was shot clandestinely in the cane fields and workers’ barracks around Belle Glade, Florida. It contains footage shot in places where no media has been successful in filming before, and where the filmmakers were denied permission to enter by the sugar corporations and the local police.
H-2 Worker focuses on the lives of the workers themselves – travelling with them to the fields, where they endure long hours of monotonous labor; to their isolated barracks; to the town where they shop for American goods to bring home to their families. Following them through one six-month season, it tell their stories: Like migrant workers worldwide, these men are driven by soaring unemployment in their home countries and promises of high wages abroad. Dreaming of American opportunities to build better lives for their families, they arrive in the U.S. with high hopes – only to confront the harsh realities of the Florida cane fields.
Providing an in-depth analysis, H-2 Worker includes voices from all sides of the issue: representatives of the sugar companies and the U.S. Department of Labor, as well as U.S.l congressmen and Jamaican Prime Minister Michael Manley. An historical analysis combine archival footage with the testimony of 80-year-old Samuel Manston, who escaped the cane fields at the time of the peonage indictments in 1942.
But the voices of the workers themselves are foremost: They are heard through extensive interviews, and through their recordings of actual letters to and from their families in Jamaica. These voices tell an eloquent story which rings with painful truth, and will not easily be forgotten. H-2 Worker is both a compelling expose of institutionalized injustice, and a moving record of human endurance.
H-2 Worker, a 70-minute, 16 mm, color documentary made over the course of 3 1/2 years, combines the talents of director/producer Stephanie Black, award-winning editor John Mullen and cinematographer Maryse Alberti. It is a film with powerful impact and resonance, certain to be both compelling and controversial.
“‘H-2 Worker’ is that rare hybrid that succeeds as both film and advocacy. The documentary’s look and form is smooth and sophisticated … [and] it solidly frames issues about the economy, employment, and the treatment of workers who seem just steps away from slavery.” -The New York Times
“‘H-2 Worker’ is a revealing look at these men and the treatment they receive on our shores … [Stephanie Black] manages to capture the scope as well as the intensity of the problem. -New York Newsday
“With admirable fluency, Black combines straightforward information and analysis with more evocative glimpses of the workers’ lives …. Black and her collaborators have an unsentimental conviction that these workers are fully human, that they experience not just anger and suffering but also love and pleasure – and even hope.” -The Nation”

According to the update 1992, a class action suit found five sugar cane companies guilty of cheating more than 10,000 cane cutters of their contractually guaranteed minimum wage during the  two seasons documented in the film.

51,000.000 in back pay was awarded.
Then the decision was revered by the Florida Appellate court finding that the H-2 contract was “ambiguous.”

Sugar cane is being harvested mechanically however the number of H-2 workers has substantially increased.

North Carolina: 10,000 workers
Colorado 2,000 workers
Maryland 9,622 (crab houses, fire work, hotel work)
Most of the workers come from Mexico.
In March 2008, over 100 guest workers from India, walked off their H-2B jobs at Signal, an oil rig construction company in Louisiana, protesting the company’s unacceptable living and working conditions.
These are not illegals. These are people that come here legally.

In the country where the people are coming from there are labor brokers that sell assess to the people from all these countries. In India that access was sold for 20,000 dollars.
People come here and they are not paid what they are told plus they had to pay the recruiters.

Over 2,100 H-2 shepherds from Peru, Chile, Mexico and Nepal work for American Ranchers. They are expected to work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for a minim monthly wage of less that 1,000.

If you think it’s just farm workers you’re wrong.

http://allnurses.com/international-nursing/h2b-visa-338815.html

“That visa is also not valid for nurses and is grounds to get one deported from the US. We see it being advertised in the Philippines but it makes one subject to immigration fraud. It is for untrained workers for a very specific length of time, and nurses do not meet those requirements from the start. We see this being used for the LPN, and there are no legal visas for them to enter the US and work here.

Please forward a copy of any of the garbage that you see offering this, and that is exactly what it is, to the US Embassy there in Manila. You would be sold as a slave to the highest bidder

They would also have you giving false information to the US Embassy officials and this is grounds for deportation for up to ten years after a stay in immigration detention before you are deported. You would be placed in a nursing home to work and they are undergoing frequent raids exactly for this.

Save yourself from having nightmares about being picked up by ICE.”

http://allnurses.com/international-nursing/h2b-visa-338815.html

Businesses continue to lobby for an expanded guest worker program with reduced wages and less government oversight. The violations are rampart.

No one talks about this. They talk about fences. The very people who push the hatred of the illegal people that come here use the H-2 workers as slave labor.

We’re being duped. Our attention is being diverted.
Pay attention.
We still have slaves in America. We call them H-2 workers.

 

Big Sugar Summit: Dr Gail Hollander, “Raising Cane in the Glades.”

#bigsugarsummit

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Big Sugar Summit: Dr Gail Hollander, “Raising Cane in the Glades.”

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So excited hear this lecture. As I said before there will a final video with all the bells and whistles and slides professional done by some else. This is only part of the lecture so I hope when the video is done you’ll watch.

The title of the lecture was

“The History of Big Sugar in the Everglades Agricultural Area”

Dr Gail Hollander is an Associate Professor of Geography, Department of Global and Sociocultural Studies, Florida International University. She is the author of “Raising Cane in the Glades: The Global Sugar Trade and the Transformation of Florida.

raisingcane

The book is available on Amazon.

Over the last century, the Everglades underwent a metaphorical and ecological transition from impenetrable swamp to endangered wetland.  At the heart of this transformation lies the Florida sugar industry, which by the 1990s was at the center of the political storm over the multi-billion dollar ecological “restoration” of the Everglades.  Raising Cane in the ’Glades is the first study to situate the environmental transformation of the Everglades within the economic and historical geography of global sugar production and trade.

Using, among other sources, interviews, government and corporate documents, and recently declassified U.S. State Department memoranda, Gail M. Hollander demonstrates that the development of Florida’s sugar region was the outcome of pitched battles reaching the highest political offices in the U.S. and in countries around the world, especially Cuba—which emerges in her narrative as a model, a competitor, and the regional “other” to Florida’s “self.”  Spanning the period from the age of empire to the era of globalization, the book shows how the “sugar question”—a label nineteenth-century economists coined for intense international debates on sugar production and trade—emerges repeatedly in new guises. Hollander uses the sugar question as a thread to stitch together past and present, local and global, in explaining Everglades transformation.

Here is the video.

ACOE and the Herbert Hoover Dike: We should be up in arms together!

To the people of Clewiston, Florida

ACOE and the Herbert Hoover Dike: We should be up in arms together!

Army_CoE_sign_Hoover_Dike

Let’s take a moment to remember when the discharges came back in 2013 and we all went to Phipp’s Park. 7000 of us together in true Solidarity. The day most of us met each other.

That day we all heard this speech from the Indian RiverKeeper Marty Baum.

For many of us this was a call to action. For the people of Clewiston it was a call to flood them and make them float away. Of course, that’s not what Marty said. He didn’t say flood the houses. He said flood the fields and he was referring big sugars ability to keep their water at the exact height needed.

I posted that video of Marty on my old video blog on UVU which was part of WPBT2. I’m not sure what happened to UVU but I posted a lot of content there.

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I posted Mark Perry, the video of the march to the locks, and others that got a decent amount of views. Marty’s video got 2400 views which is huge.

After the Sugarland Rally, when the people of Clewiston were accusing us of wanting to flood them I realized that probably every person in Clewiston probably saw that video. There was no explaining to them what the intention was. Their minds were set.

We heard that we HAD to have to discharges to protect the people that live south of the lake. Most of us understand that. That was 2 years ago and many millions of dollars.

Are the people south of lake any safer today than they were then?

This is from 2013

http://www.hurricaneanalytics.com/2013/02/three_levee_fact

. The levee is expected to fail. I know that sounds bad, and it is. FEMA is apparently planning to update flood assessments this summer and redraw flood maps for Palm Beach and Martin counties. These flood maps are expected to be drawn as if the levee around Lake Okeechobee didn’t exist. In other words, they are not counting on the levees to protect against flooding.

2. The Herbert Hoover Dike is in the highest failure category of the Army Corps risk scale. Current efforts are being directed at reducing the risk category, but as it stands (and even after millions of dollars worth of improvements) the levee protecting the area still carries the highest risk classification (DSAC 1) of any dam in the United States.

3. There is no emergency spillway, nor is one planned to be built. There is no good, controlled way to drain off excess water from the lake should a large amount of rain fall in a short amount of time. Lake Okeechobee fills six times faster than it can be drained, and a foot of rainfall would result in 3 to 4 feet of water rise in the lake. Current levees will start to fail when the lake rises above 18.5 feet above mean sea level (it’s at roughly 14 feet currently), and significant levee problems are almost certain to occur when the lake reaches 20 feet over MSL.

This is from 2015.

http://www.constructionequipmentguide.com/Improvements-Continue-for-Herbert-Hoover-Dike/21625/

“In what appears to be a never-ending task, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers crews in Florida continue working on the outdated Herbert Hoover Dike surrounding Lake Okeechobee — the state’s largest freshwater lake. Since 2007, teams have performed various tasks to reduce the risk of dike failure due to flooding from high water levels.”

Because of the construction methods used in the 1930s, the dike is susceptible to erosion of the earthen embankment,” said John Campbell, public affairs specialist of the Jacksonville District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). “Over the past six years, we have installed a 21.4 mile concrete barrier known as a cutoff wall into the southeast quadrant of the dike. The cutoff wall is designed to reduce seepage and prevent erosion.”

The cutoff wall extends from roughly 6 ft. (1.8 m) from the top of the dike through the foundation to several feet beyond the limestone bedrock, averaging between 60 to 80 ft. (18.3 to 24.4 m) below the crest of the dike. It’s considered crucial to the rehabilitation effort, although is by no means a solution to a complex problem. Despite a multi-million dollar effort by USACE, the dike remains on a national shortlist of unsafe class 1 dams, with a category defined as either “almost certain to fail under normal operations” or at “extreme risk of failure with high fatalities and economic losses.” Campbell said progress has been made, but there is a long way to go.

“The $200 million invested so far made it possible to install the cutoff wall in the southeast quadrant of the dike between Port Mayaca and Belle Glade,” said Campbell.

TWO HUNDRED MILLION DOLLARS and the people are no safer than they were two years ago.

Anyone say Big Dig?

People of Clewiston you should be up in arms!

Up in arms

We should be up in arms because as long as this is the case our discharges will never stop.

We should be up in arms together.

I feel  like Danny Kaye in this clip.

Here are some photo’s I took from the car as Julie and I whizzed by last weekend.

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There was one spot that looked like a giant sand bag. Not a lot of confidence going into hurricane season.

The reason I bring this up is because our campaign to build a reservoir ended with discharges and toxic green algae sightings and it felt like what went around came around and we were back to square one with the ACOE. The people south of the lake are still in grave danger.

Don’t you think that having a reservoir south of the lake would take some pressure off those dikes and help to keep those people safer?

It felt like ring around the rosey.

It felt like deja vu all over again.

So just a note to the folks out in Clewiston. If you want to be upset with someone be upset with the ACOE and be upset with your bosses at big us sugar corp who are against anything that will keep you safe.

gumbe

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Sugar U: The US Sugar Corp

@sugarcard2

In a few week we’ll be going to the Sugar Summit that is being put together by our great friends, the Florida SIerra Club. I thought it was a good time to bone up on who’z who and what’s what.

Please feel free to chime in. Even at sugarcard2 – we want to hear from you!

Yesterday, my friend Jules and I went out to Clewiston. The headquarters for US Sugar Corporation resides there.

They call themselves ” America’s Sweetest Town.” Maybe sweet in sugar but not sweet people. The last time I went out there was to shoot “The Sugarland Rally”

Sugarland-540x675The Sugarland Rally was a really sincere effort to bring people together to discuss our water issues together. Lead by our friend Justin Riney. This was their message.

An open letter to Florida residents from The Sugarland Rally Committee:

Dear Florida,

Please read these important details regarding a bicoastal rally we have planned for September 1st on Lake Okeechobee. There are multiple organizations involved in planning this event, and we need your help immediately to get the word out.

 The Sugarland Rally will unite the east and west coasts of Florida in a peaceful, historic demonstration to speak out against the pollution of our estuaries from Lake Okeechobee discharges. We support both immediate and long-term solutions, but ecosystems and communities along the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee Estuaries are in crisis. We cannot afford to wait for ecological and economic collapse. We urge all stakeholders–especially local, state and federal governments–to act immediately.

 We chose Clewiston as a central location to unify east and west at Lake Okeechobee, the source that is polluting our estuaries, and because we believe Florida’s sugar industry can be part of the solution. Please don’t misinterpret our intentions–we are NOT holding a rally at Clewiston to protest or point fingers at “Big Sugar.” It’s quite the opposite, actually. We invite Florida’s powerful sugar industry to join us in crafting an immediate solution to the ecological and economic crisis caused by discharges from Lake Okeechobee. Here’s a golden opportunity to earn the respect, loyalty, and trust of Floridians for generations to come–to squash the stereotypes–by standing with the people in support of a solution. Without the healthy longevity of Florida’s land and water, we’re all out of business. Our children and grandchildren are out of business. We invite Florida’s sugar industry to stand with us in support of preserving the wonderful land and water that keeps us all in business. We must think longer term, we must think sustainably, and the time to act is now.

 Our message is a peaceful one to emphasize a powerful sense of unity needed among ALL Floridians, and to urge local, state, and federal governments to act immediately to stop the pollution of our estuaries from Lake Okeechobee discharges. We are all entitled to healthy land and water, and it is our responsibility as citizens, working with our government, to preserve these treasured assets and ensure their longevity for generations to come. Let’s all unite as Floridians in support of both immediate and long-term solutions. The Sugarland Rally will be a peaceful demonstration that we can all be proud of.

 Join The Sugarland Rally conversation on the event page at http://www.bit.ly/sugarlandrally, and please share this post with as many concerned Floridians as possible. This is a call to action, and we need your help.

 Respectfully,

The Sugarland Rally Committee

This was a rally to have a discussion to pull us all together.  US= east coast, west coast, and the people of Clewiston. For us it was to make sure we respect the people that live in the south of the lake and make sure they are safe. Human being stuff. Community stuff.

Here is the video I shot. As you can see at the beginning we were quit stoked to be there.

After the rally we went on the invitation of the Mayor to the Roland Martin Marina for some food. When we got there they refused to serve us. Every person in the room stared us down and honestly if they had guns they would have shot us down.

We went next door where I met up with friends Bob and Lisa Riney (parents of justin) and ate lunch and my friends did end up getting a few drinks because Mayor Roland showed up.

Mind you, I’m the video girl, who’s only job was to document the event. And I was starving, hot, tired. So so much for Southern Hospitality. So much for olive branches.

Afterwards in the Clewiston New’s more hate came from the people who were quite verbal, quite nasty and totally unwilling to listen to any kind of reason.

To this day, I still believe in the mission of the Sugarland rally and our extended Olive Branch.

olive branch

I can’t tell you why. I’m not a psychic. I can only tell you what happened.

In spit of that, I still worry about the people who live there and how much work is being done on the dike and always hope they will be safe.

When we went out yesterday I even wore my Marshall Tucker Band T shirt. I mean who would shoot a video girl with a Marshall Tucker Band Shirt? (Really didn’t stay there long enough to find out)

This stop BTW just a pit stop on our way to STA 5/6.

On the corner of “Happy and Healthy”

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US Sugar

US Sugar

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/US_Sugar_Corporation

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They also run the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Central_Florida_Express,_Inc.

South Central Florida Express, Incorporated (reporting mark SCXF) (originally known as the South Central Florida Railroad (reporting mark SCFE) and run by the Brandywine Valley Railroad until September 17, 1994) is a short line railroad in southern Florida run by US Sugar Corporation. It serves customers at 26 locations.

U.S. Sugar, the only sugar company in the continental U.S. to transport sugarcane by rail, owns private trackage to take the cane to the SCFE. From there, the SCFE runs around both sides of Lake Okeechobee. The west side connects to CSX‘s Auburndale Subdivision at Sebring, and the east side crosses CSX at Marcy and interchanges with the Florida East Coast Railway at Fort Pierce, with haulage rights to CSX and Norfolk Southern at Jacksonville, Florida.

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US Sugar Corp campaign to help cancer

Here are some people you may know that work there.

Robert Coker

coker-full

http://www.ussugar.com/press_room/bios/coker_bio.html

Robert Coker is Senior Vice President, Public Affairs, of United States Sugar Corporation. He is responsible for managing the company’s federal, state and local government affairs department and the company’s corporate and charitable giving programs encompassing numerous community and employee-relations activities. As a member of senior management, Coker also actively participates in corporate matters involving real estate, environmental regulation, budgeting and allocation of capital.

He is a former Chairman of the Board of Regents for Leadership Florida. He serves on the board of directors for the Florida Sugar Cane League, the Board of Trustees of BIZ-PAC of Palm Beach County and is a member of the Board of Governors for the Florida Chamber of Commerce. He is a member of the Board of Trustees and serves on the Executive Committee of Florida Taxwatch.

Malcolm “Bubba” Wade

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http://www.ussugar.com/press_room/bios/wade_bio.html

Malcolm S. Wade, Jr. is Senior Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Business Development of United States Sugar Corporation. He has been employed by the Company for more than 27 years and has been a member of the senior management team for over 20 years. Wade, a certified public accountant, joined the company as Director of Internal Audit in 1982 and subsequently was named director, vice president and senior vice president of the Administrative Service Group and is currently senior vice president of sugar operations.

For more than 20 years, Wade has been involved in developing and overseeing the Company’s environmental responsibilities. Through his appointments by two governors and the South Florida Water Management District to working groups on South Florida environmental issues, Wade has helped shape public policy regarding Everglades Restoration.

In March 2005, Governor Bush appointed Wade to a four-year term on the South Florida Water Management District’s Governing Board, a position he resigned in 2008 due to the State’s proposed acquisition of U.S. Sugar. Previously, Wade was a member of the team representing South Florida farmers that spent more than a year negotiating with the Interior and Justice Departments, the State of Florida and the South Florida Water Management District to resolve the legal disputes over Everglades Restoration. He represented farmers on the technical mediation committee that crafted the Technical Mediated Plan for Everglades Restoration, which was adopted by the Florida Legislature in the spring of 1994.

He was appointed by Gov. Lawton Chiles to the Governor’s Commission for a Sustainable South Florida, which worked for four years to establish a consensus plan for Everglades Restoration. The work of the commission became the framework for the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) approved by Congress and is currently being implemented throughout south Florida.

Wade’s work on restoration issues continued with his appointment by Gov. Jeb Bush to the Governor’s Commission for the Everglades. He is a past member and co-chair of the South Florida Water Management District Water Resource Advisory Commission (WRAC) as well as a past member and chairman of the Lake Okeechobee Advisory Committee of the WRAC. He is also a past member of the District’s Lower East Coast Water Supply Planning Committee and the Budget Review commission. In addition, Wade served on the South Florida Agricultural Council Water Commission, the Caloosahatchee Water Management Advisory Committee and is a director of the Everglades Agricultural Area Environmental Protection District.

Wade is a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Internal Auditor. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Institute of Internal Auditors.

JUDY C. SANCHEZ

sanchez-full

www.ussugar.com/press_room/bios/sanchez_bio.html

Judy C. Sanchez is the Senior Director of Corporate Communications and Public Affairs for United States Sugar Corporation. She joined U.S. Sugar in 1994, transferring from its South Bay Growers vegetable division where she worked as a Marketing Specialist.

Mrs. Sanchez attended the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications and graduated from Florida Atlantic University with a degree in communications. A fourth generation farmer, she has spent most of her life in and around the sugar cane industry, both in Florida and Louisiana. She currently serves on the board of directors for the Western Palm Beach County Farm Bureau, Childcare of Southwest Florida, and the Agricultural Institute of Florida.

She lives in Belle Glade, Florida, with her husband and two sons.

Judy follows me on twitter so I hope she reads this. We night not like what Judy does or says but for her boss’s she does a great job! Check out the tweets!

I think this tweet says it all.

Here are some fun videos for our friends out in Clewiston.

Don’t be a bad arnie!

Sure glad my visit to Clewiston yesterday didn’t end like this.

or this