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Press Release

A federal judge in New Orleans sanctioned a forestry company after finding it exploited the judicial process by continually flouting court orders to turn over information to Southern Poverty Law Center attorneys.

The Southern Poverty Law Center today sued one of New Orleans' wealthiest hotel owners on behalf of Latin American immigrants who were lured through false promises and charged thousands of dollars in fees to fill jobs held by New Orleanians prior to Hurricane Katrina.

The Southern Poverty Law Center charged today that a New Orleans hotel chain violated federal labor standards by firing the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit alleging the exploitation of Latin American guestworkers who were recruited to fill jobs vacated by Hurricane Katrina evacuees.

Hurricane Katrina ripped through New Orleans one year ago and much of the city hasn't been rebuilt. Workers imported from other states and countries to rebuild the city are underpaid and exploited by government-hired contractors.

The Southern Poverty Law Center has released the Fall 2006 issue of Teaching Tolerance magazine, which includes an article about children adjusting to life and school in Houston after being displaced by Hurricane Katrina.

An Idaho-based forestry company doing business across the South will pay substantial damages and enact far-reaching reforms to bring its work practices into compliance with the law under a settlement agreement in a Center lawsuit.

The Southern Poverty Law Center has entered into an agreement with Belfor USA Group to ensure that migrant workers laboring in post-Katrina New Orleans receive wages that were withheld from them by Belfor subcontractors.

A federal judge often called the "real governor of Texas" because of his sweeping rulings in noted civil rights cases has been selected as the winner of the 2006 Morris Dees Justice Award, which is named for the founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center.

A federal court in Atlanta has granted class action status to a Center lawsuit that seeks to reform abusive employment practices rampant in the nation's forestry industry.

The Southern Poverty Law Center today submitted to President Bush the names of 20,528 people who signed a petition calling on his administration to protect thousands of migrant workers from exploitation as they work to rebuild New Orleans.