Global meatpacking giant goes all in for refugee labor

By Leo Hohmann

The U.S. headquarters for Brazil-based JBS Swift meat company in Greeley, Colorado. Photo courtesy Refugee Resettlement Watch
The U.S. headquarters for Brazil-based JBS Swift meat company in Greeley, Colorado. (Photo courtesy Refugee Resettlement Watch)

A Lutheran resettlement agency that places United Nations refugees into dozens of U.S. cities and towns is working with the world’s largest meatpacking conglomerate to train refugees for work in four American states while also softening up the local natives to be more “welcoming.”

The secretive pilot program between Baltimore-based Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service and the U.S. subsidiary of JBS Swift aims to pump more refugees into Georgia, Texas, Iowa and Michigan to work in the company’s meat plants. If successful, the pilot program could be renewed for a second year and replicated at JBS meat plants across the U.S., WND has learned.

See an interactive map of JBS Swift meat plants in the United States.

JBS Swift, the Brazilian-based global meat-processing giant, has agreed to pay Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services, or LIRS, $155,000 to implement the pilot program over the next year in the four states, according to a draft of the partnership agreement obtained by WND from a person with inside knowledge of the deal.

“The shock here is to find out that a religious agency is being paid by a foreign global corporation to train refugees and ultimately transform the demographics of small towns in America’s heartland,” said Ann Corcoran, an expert on the international movement of refugees and the nine volunteer agencies that resettle them for the U.S. Department of State.

Since the targeted demographic is meatpacking towns, which tend to be located in small towns – that’s a direct hit against Republican congressmen and President Donald Trump, said Corcoran.

“Trump was elected president by rural and semi-rural America,” she said. “The major urban centers all went for Hillary Clinton, so every Republican voter should be concerned about what the meatpacking industry is doing here, trying to import the Third World and more Democrat voters into rural America.”

Trump has slowed the influx of refugees to about half the level seen under President Obama, but he has been unable to dismantle the resettlement industry, which will be primed to crank right back up as soon as a Democrat or globalist Republican takes over the White House.

Trump is allowing 45,000 refugees to arrive on U.S. soil over the next 12 months, compared to 85,000 during Obama’s last full year in office.

The deal between the global meat producer JBS and the Lutheran agency has been dubbed “Rebuilding Dreams,” and is described in the draft document as a “grant and collaboration agreement” between JBS USA and LIRS in the four states.

“The primary goal of this agreement is to improve the capacity of JBS USA and local resettlement agencies to support and improve the hiring and retention of refugee employees at four pilot sites in Michigan, Texas, Iowa, and Georgia,” according to the document.

The following are the cities in those states where JBS has meatpacking plants:

  1. Iowa – Council Bluffs, Marshalltown and Ottumwa, mostly pork production
  2. Michigan – Plainwell, mostly beef
  3. Georgia – Elberton, Douglas, Athens, Ellijay, Canton and Carrollton, mostly chicken
  4. Texas – Waco, Lufkin, Nacogdoches, Pittsburg and Mount Pleasant, mostly chicken

Rebuilding Dreams will achieve this goal by creating customized trainings and resources for key stakeholders, building stronger relationships through communications and technology platforms, enhancing the collection and evaluation of data, and improving the overall quality and culture of the workplace experience for refugee employees,” the agreement states.

The agreement also calls for improving the local “welcoming culture” in the cities where the refugees will be placed.

Part of United Nations agenda for sustainability

JBS is a transnational, global corporation that beats the United Nations “sustainability” drum on its website, and it also cashes in on the globalized “labor mobility” concept pushed by the U.N.’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Under the 2030 Agenda, approved by President Obama and 190 world leaders in September 2015, citizens of underdeveloped countries in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East are seen as “human capital” to be shifted around the world like pieces on a chess board. As migrants they are granted U.N. “rights” to access everything from jobs to affordable healthcare, affordable transportation and housing in wealthy Western nations.

Learn about the Islamization of American cities through refugee resettlement in the book former Congresswoman Michele Bachmann is calling the most important read of 2017, “Stealth Invasion: Muslim Conquest through Immigration and Resettlement Jihad.”

The pilot-program deal between the Lutheran agency LIRS and JBS was signed in late August and plans are to eventually roll it out to all 100-plus U.S. meat plants operated by JBS.

Another deal between Lutherans and Tyson Foods

WND was informed by the insider source that LIRS has inked another partnership deal with Tyson Foods, a major poultry producer, to provide “financial literacy” classes to Tyson employees, starting with a pilot program in northwest Arkansas/Missouri.

“We want to formally congratulate your team on an exceptional proposal,” Tyson told LRIS in an email forwarded to WND. “In particular, we were impressed with the cultural and gender sensitivities it included, the overall structure of your pilot, and the local partnership networks you were able to identify. We were also encouraged to learn about your organizational experience working with one of our major competitors – JBS.”

Brad Sievers, the human resources director for Greeley, Colorado-based JBS USA, did not return repeated calls to his office Friday and Monday.

Nina Zelic, director of refugee services for Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, who worked to consummate the deals with JBS and Tyson, also did not return phone calls from WND seeking comment.

This is not the first time JBS has used a church group to help it snag foreign labor in a small town. JBS has been partnering with a United Methodist Church in Plainwell, Michigan, since 2014. The church works through the Lutheran placement agency to help find housing and English tutoring for refugees in that small town, where JBS operates a beef plant.

Rev. Kathy Brown of Plainwell United Methodist told her local newspaper of a 2015 sermon she shared with her church about Jesus reaching out to others, sometimes in unexpected ways.

“I reminded the congregation that last fall we expected to welcome Burmese Christians and got Sudanese Muslims,” the Methodist pastor said. “The blessing God gave us is not the one we prepared for.”

“Who would have thought that God would call little Plainwell, not exactly the most multi-cultural community in the world, to this great ministry?” Brown concludes. “But that’s what happens with constant prayer, careful listening, and being open to whatever God gives.”

The gradual increase in refugees entering the United States from the Islamic world over the past 35 years has long been tied to Democratic machine politics. The Obama administration was blamed for using refugees to bolster the Democratic voting base in red states such as Texas, Georgia, North Carolina and Tennessee.

While that may be true, the Republican and Chamber of Commerce roles have been just as supportive, if less understood, of refugee resettlement. Executives from food giants Cargill, Hormel, JBS and Tyson Foods all donate generously to politicians in both parties, which may explain why Congress has never taken a serious look at the refugee program to find out its overall impact on American cities from a financial, political or cultural perspective.

The nine volunteer agencies that directly benefit financially from the refugee influx are allowed to also lobby Congress and the White House for more refugees, something many critics say is a blatant conflict of interest that should be banned.

Now, for the first time, critics of open-borders, globalist policies have evidence of a direct financial link between a resettlement agency, which is supposed to be a religious charity, and foreign-based corporate titans seeking cheap foreign labor to replace Americans in the workplace, said Corcoran, who blogs at Refugee Resettlement Watch.

“We’ve always suspected there was a link but thought it was much more informal,” Corcoran told WND. “I never envisioned the meatpacking companies were actually paying the refugee contractors to train refugees to work in their plants.”

Corcoran said so-called Big Meat – the handful of massive corporations that resulted from years of consolidation – has been exploiting refugee labor since the mid-1990s when President Bill Clinton’s administration sent Bosnian Muslim refugees to work in meat plants in Iowa. And they’ve been transforming small-town America ever since.

‘Flipping’ a small town on its head

A very small town like Noel, Missouri, or Lexington, Nebraska, can be “flipped” in as little as 10 years, transforming a 90-plus percent native Christian community into a diverse mix of African and Asian enclaves, mostly Muslim by faith.

Take the case of tiny Noel, which went from a sleepy little tourist town of 1,000 people on the Elk River to a city nearly double that size after Tyson Foods opened a chicken plant there and started hiring African refugees in the early 2000s.

By 2010, between about 500 Somali refugees and 60 to 70 Sudanese refugees made up the town’s 1,800 residents. Most of the new arrivals were sent there to work for Tyson Foods. In 2011, 130 Muslim employees stopped working temporarily after they were discouraged from praying five times a day by Tyson managers. Tyson Foods later released a statement dismissing the controversy as a cross-cultural “unfortunate misunderstanding” created by language barriers, according to an article in the Joplin Globe.

A mosque was established in 2009, and an African grocery store opened on Main Street in 2010 selling headscarves, halal meats and colorful rugs. In 2017, the town’s mayor, John Lafley, said the Muslim refugees, “want to practice their Sharia law here, and that’s one thing the city won’t tolerate.”

A few years ago, a military aircraft circled the town for a full day without explanation, a man who has relatives in the area and has been a frequent visitor to Noel told WND.

“That incident was completely covered up. No facts ever emerged. We heard rumors that two of the Somalis were engaged in making bombs. The Army caught them and took them away. Martial law for a day, in a small Missouri town,” said John Oglesbee in an email to WND. “Schools were locked down, all traffic stopped. Possible terror activity. No mention, at all, in any news outlet.”

Oglesbee said the town has lost many quality businesses, including a a popular restaurant, in recent years.

“One of the finest small restaurants, with a real four-star chef, used to be in downtown Noel. The last time I was in there, we were the only customers,” he said. “A Somali business had been opened next door, and they guarded the space to such a degree that no customers chanced the fine restaurant anymore.”

He said a few Somali teens have tried to leave the closed, “hostile society,” in an effort to become Americanized.

“They’ve been taken in by residents of nearby towns, where they are protected,” he said. “I know of one girl who converted to Christianity, lives with a Christian family, and can now attend high school in [another city] in Missouri. The story of this Somali girl is one of horror. She lives in fear of her previous, actual family, and of other Somalis. I’m certain you’re aware of [Islamic] honor killings.”

Noel is a testament to the federal government’s destructive globalist policies and corporate greed, Oglesbee said. A once-vibrant town, in a beautiful setting with a tourist industry that stretches back over a hundred years, is now a place nobody wants to live.

Many local people “won’t even drive through there anymore,” he said.

Tiny Michigan town in the crosshairs

A similar transformation is underway in little Plainwell, Michigan, where JBS operates a plant. Refugees have begun arriving over the past five or six years from abroad. First it was persecuted Christians from Burma, which nobody seemed to mind because they mixed well and assimilated into the community. But more recently, the refugees being brought in by Lutheran Social Services were Sudanese Muslims who are coming from U.N. camps in Chad and Libya.

The Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services, whose top eight executives all bring home salaries of between $112,000 and $300,000, has profited greatly from its ties to global meat packers.

Meat plants in particular, and the food-processing industry in general, have long been a gateway into the United States for Third Worlders looking for a better economic lot in life. Chobani serves as a similar conduit with its massive yogurt plant in Twin Falls, Idaho.

“Big Yogurt has learned from Big Meat,” Corcoran said.

Meatpacking once provided middle-class American jobs

The U.S. meatpacking industry has replaced many of its U.S. workers, first with Mexicans in the 1970s and 1980s, and then with Africans and Asians in the 1990s and early 2000s.

Immigrants hold 35 percent of the 441,000 animal slaughtering and processing jobs in the U.S., according to the U.S. Census Bureau. No statistics are available on how many of those immigrants are refugees, but estimates range from 5 to 12 percent.

Over a period of about 20 years, the industry went from being one of the highest-paid manufacturing industries to one of the lowest.

“People would stand in line for these jobs because they actually paid a living wage,” says Corcoran, who went on a tour of meatpacking towns throughout the West and Midwest in the summer of 2016 to find out how refugee labor was being exploited while transforming small town America into Islamic enclaves.

The following are the nine federal contractors that resettle U.N. refugees, and the extent to which they are funded by federal tax dollars.

  • Church World Service, (part of National Council of Churches) 71 percent funded by taxpayers
  • Ethiopian Community Development Council, 93 percent funded by taxpayers
  • Episcopal Migration Ministries, 99.5 percent funded by taxpayers
  • Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, 57 percent funded by taxpayers
  • International Rescue Committee, 66.5 percent funded by taxpayers
  • U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, 98 percent funded by taxpayers
  • Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services, 95 percent funded by taxpayers
  • United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 97 percent funded by taxpayers
  • World Relief Corp., an arm of the National Association of Evangelicals, 73 percent funded by taxpayers

Any so-called “private” charity that receives more than half of its revenue from the feds is essentially a quasi-governmental organization and should not be allowed to lobby Congress or the White House, Corcoran said.

But the money doesn’t stop there. These nine contractors subcontract with a network of more than 365 other agencies working in communities nationwide under various names. They have names like Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan, Lutheran Family Services Nebraska, Samaritas of Michigan, Softlanding Montana, Global Detroit, and Lutheran Social Services Minnesota.

Here is a state-by-state list of agencies that subcontract with Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, which is just one of the nine primary federal contractors working to bring refugees to your town:

Canopy of Northwest Arkansas, Fayetteville

Refugee Focus, Phoenix, Tuscon

Interfaith Refugee and Immigration Service, Los Angeles

Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains, Denver, Colorado Springs, Greeley

Lutheran Social Services of Northeast Florida, Jacksonville
Lutheran Services Florida, Miami, Orlando, Tampa

Lutheran Services of Georgia, Atlanta and Savannah

RefugeeOne, Chicago

Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area, Hyattsville

Ascentria Community Services, Westfield, Worcester

Samaritas, Ann Arbor, Battle Creek, Grand Rapids, Troy

Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota, Minneapolis, St. Cloud

Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska, Omaha

New Hampshire
Ascentria Community Services, Concord

New Mexico
Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains, Albuquerque, Santa Fe

New York
Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees, Utica

North Carolina
Lutheran Services Carolinas, Raleigh

North Dakota
Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota—Center for New Americans, Bismarck, Fargo, Grand Forks

Lutheran Community Services Northwest, Portland

Bethany Christian Services, Allentown, Lancaster, Philadelphia

South Carolina
Lutheran Services Carolinas, Columbia, Charleston

South Dakota
Lutheran Social Services of South Dakota, Sioux Falls

Refugee Services of Texas, Dallas, Fort Worth, Amarillo, Houston

Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area, Falls Church

Lutheran Community Services Northwest, Tacoma, Vancouver

Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan, Madison, Milwauk

Global corporations dealing in meat processing and packing in the United States include:

Beef Packers:
• Tyson Foods
• Cargill Meat Solutions (Excel)
• JBS USA (Swift)
• National Beef

Pork Packers:
• Smithfield Foods
• Tyson Foods
• Cargill Meat Solutions
• Hormel

Broiler Chickens, turkeys:
• Pilgrim’s Pride [owned by JBS Swift]
• Tyson Foods
• Perdue Farms
• Sanderson Farms
• Hormel

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