A message from the United Farm Workers (UFW):
“‘My children and I lost our lifeline, support, our friend, everything to us.’
Nubia Guajardo is talking about her partner Randy Vasquez, a 27 year old dairy worker, who drowned in a tragic accident at work at a Darigold Dairy when his front loader truck tipped into a cow manure pond. Randy had been working at Riverview Ranch, a dairy that provides milk to Darigold.
Nubia realls that Randy had often lamented to her about the harsh working conditions; the shifts were long, sometimes longer than 10 hours per day and he usually worked the night shift. He’d also suffered an accident at work when chemicals splashed into his eyes. Nubia told us she watched Randy fervently look for work elsewhere, at warehouse stores and distribution centers but he had no luck; he continued to work at dairies to support Nubia and their two children ages 3 and 2 years old. ‘My children are left without their Dad!’
Nubia recalls how Randy would come home from work exhausted and hungry from the backbreaking work and frequent night shifts. But on February 25th, Randy didn’t come home. Instead she received a knock on her door in the morning from officers notifying her that Randy was killed. Nubia doesn’t know how to explain to her children that their father is dead; she can hardly make sense of it herself!
She reflects on how easy it would have been to take safety precautions, such as signs warning workers of the dangers of the pond. ‘I would want the ranches to be more careful. I would want them to actually put something around those holes so nobody could fall through.’ Nubia wants people to take action to prevent a tragedy like this from ever happening again.