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Lawsuit settled over migrant working conditions in Nebraska
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Lawsuit settled over migrant working conditions in Nebraska

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A lawsuit filed last year over working conditions for migrant detasseling workers has been settled.

Attorneys representing the 13 workers, who were recruited from Texas to detassel corn near Kearney in 2017, said a Nebraska federal court dismissed the suit last month after the parties came to a settlement in January.

Terms of the settlement between the workers and Monsanto and Gulf Citrus Harvesting & Hauling are confidential, but neither company admitted any wrongdoing or violation of law.

Lawsuit: Migrant workers hired to detassel in Nebraska faced substandard conditions

Legal Aid of Nebraska, which along with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid represented the workers, said in a news release that the dispute was "resolved to the mutual satisfaction of all parties."

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Lincoln in April 2020, had alleged that the workers, several of whom were teenagers at the time, weren't paid the federal minimum wage and were subjected to substandard working conditions during the roughly four weeks they spent in Nebraska.

Among the allegations were that the workers weren't credited for all hours worked, didn't receive promised bonuses and were provided with substandard food and water.

The suit had been seeking unpaid wages, plus an equal amount as liquidated damages, as well as statutory damages of up to $500 per person, per violation, under the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act.

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Reach the writer at 402-473-2647 or molberding@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LincolnBizBuzz.

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Business reporter

Matt Olberding is a Lincoln native and University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduate who has been covering business for the Journal Star since 2005.

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