Law center: Rig repair firm, apology for mistreated workers

AP News
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Posted: Sep 29, 2015 8:23 PM

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A U.S.-based oil rig repair company has apologized to Indian guest workers drawn to the Gulf Coast on false promises and housed in squalid conditions to repair damage after Hurricane Katrina, a law center says.

The apology, in a Sept. 22 letter, is part of a $20 million settlement Signal International of Mobile, Alabama, agreed to earlier, the Southern Poverty Law Center announced Tuesday. SPLC had sued Signal on behalf of hundreds of Indian welders and shipfitters, calling it one of the largest labor trafficking cases in American history.

Signal didn't return a call Tuesday to The Associated Press, which obtained a copy of the letter .

The suit said workers were drawn to Mississippi and Texas with false promises of permanent U.S. residency, and then housed in dirty, overcrowded trailers.