Gulf Seafood Workers On Edge

Authors: sbibbins

Mike Voisan, President of Motivatit Seafoods, and his staff are unsure of what the future holds. The ever-growing oil slick on the Gulf Coast has not yet reached their shores, but they know that catastrophe is coming. Today they talked with Green For All at their Houma, Louisiana-based oyster processing facility. Established in 1971, Motivatit Seafoods is a business owned by a family that has been in the seafood industry for over six generations.

Already Mike Voisan's business has suffered by 20%, and he has no idea what the long-term impact will be. Most of his employees are local residents and have been working for Motivatit for many years. They supply food that defines the Gulf Coast, yet their livelihood is being threatened by the dirty energy economy.

Bambi Gautreaux has worked for Motivatit for more than 18 years. She's not trained in any other line of work and greatly fears what would happen to her and her family if the oil slick shuts down the oyster industry and the facility closes. Yolanda Brown, who has been with Motivatit for six years, doesn't see an alternative for other work.

Mike Voisan is trying to keep a positive outlook, but with each day that passes, media coverage of the oil slick intensifies, keeping his workers on edge and tensions high. He compared the media attention to that of Hurricane Katrina, saying that Katrina was like the championship, while this was like the Superbowl.

The loss of Louisiana's oyster industry and these workers' jobs is just one illustration of the enormous cost of the dirty energy economy for America's communities. We need a better way. Tell President Obama and Senator Harry Reid to pass a strong climate bill and end the expansion of offshore drilling.

We'll be bringing you more stories from the impacts of the oil disaster in the coming days, from our team on the ground in the Gulf Coast. In the meantime, please act for a strong, safe clean energy economy that creates jobs and community health.

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