Columbia Farms Reaches Agreement over Hiring

US - Columbia Farms Inc. has reached agreement on hiring practices. This follows raids by federal agents last year and allegations of the hiring of illegal immigrants.
calendar icon 4 November 2009
clock icon 3 minute read

Columbia Farms, Inc. has announced that it has reached a Deferred Prosecution and Global Settlement Agreement with the US Department of Justice, the US Department of Homeland Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in regards to the alleged hiring of undocumented workers. This action resolves all pending criminal charges, as well as any civil and administrative violations, as long as the Company fulfills certain compliance obligations as part of the agreement.

"We are pleased to have reached this settlement with the government," said Robert C. Johnson, CEO of Columbia Farms, an affiliate of House of Raeford Farms Inc.

"Today's agreement acknowledges our full cooperation with the government's investigation. We continue our commitment to doing business with the highest ethical standards, and to complying with all federal and state employment laws and regulations."

The Company has also agreed to take a number of steps, most of which have been previously implemented, to strengthen employment and Form I-9 procedures throughout the entire company.

"I am pleased with the agreement that was reached today," stated United States Attorney, W. Walter Wilkins, in a prepared press notice.

"I have no reservations in entering into this agreement, as Columbia Farms and its affiliates have clearly demonstrated their acceptance of responsibility by making corporate decisions to overhaul their hiring practices not only in Greenville, SC, but in each of the plants in the House of Raeford Farms' family. I am confident that we are seeing a true change in these companies' approach to hiring, one that can serve as a model for other employers."

House of Raeford Farms and its affiliates and subsidiaries will continue to offer a workplace environment free of discrimination as well as a competitive level of compensation and benefits.

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