Letter to the Editor

Food safety and jobs

Republicans in the House have submitted their plan to cut federal spending by $100 billion in the name of job creation. A small portion of that ($88 million) are cuts to USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service.

FSIS is responsible for inspecting meat, poultry and egg products to ensure their safety for consumers. It employs some 7,400 inspectors to perform that responsibility, and no plant can operate without continuous inspection by an FSIS inspector. This means the 12 plants in Jo Ann Emerson's district will be idled if the cuts to the FSIS budget are approved, putting the inspectors and hundreds of private sector employees out of work.

Representative Emerson sits on the U.S. House of Representatives Appropriations Committee that drafted the legislation to make the cuts in the budget for meat and poultry inspection. She claims to be for jobs, but cutting the FSIS budget will directly kill jobs in Southeast Missouri, not to mention make our food supply less safe.

WENONAH HAUTER, executive director of

Food and Water Watch, Washington, D.C.