The National Chicken Council and the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association released the following statement in response to the release of Oxfam America’s report, No Relief:
“The health, safety and respect of our employees is very important, and we value their contributions in helping to produce our food. We’re troubled by these claims but also question this group’s efforts to paint the whole industry with a broad brush based on a handful of anonymous claims. We believe such instances are extremely rare and that U.S. poultry companies work hard to prevent them.
“Although individual practices vary by company, restroom breaks are planned for any production line. Most facilities also employ extra people to cover for production workers who request a bathroom break. In addition, medical-related situations are taken into account and accommodations are made.
“Coordinating restroom breaks in the workplace is certainly not unique to the chicken industry. Whether it’s a cashier, bus driver, bartender, bank teller or just about any manufacturing job, there are practices in place related to restroom breaks that are clearly outlined to the employee.”