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USDA To Honor Slain Food Safety Compliance Officers And Investigator

Posted Jun 18 2010 9:01am
Congressional and Public Affairs
(202) 720-9113
Neil Gaffney

WASHINGTON, June 18, 2010 - June 21, 2000 was a tragic day that always will be remembered at the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service. That day — nearly a decade ago — FSIS Compliance Officers Jean Hillery and Thomas Quadros, along with California Department of Food and Agriculture Senior Special Investigator Bill Shaline, were killed while serving to protect the nation's food supply. The three were the first agricultural agents gunned down in the line of duty. Stuart Alexander, owner of a San Leandro, Calif., sausage factory, was later found guilty and convicted of first-degree murder.

"It's said that time heals wounds, but this is a pain that continues to ache in the hearts of our employees 10 years later," said FSIS Administrator Al Almanza, who also worked at USDA at the time. "We can't ever forget what happened, and we will never forget these heroes."

Almanza will be joined by USDA employees during a Ceremony of Remembrance on June 21, on the corner of 14th and Jefferson Streets, NW, in Washington, DC. The event will begin with the distribution of commemorative ribbons at 7:30 a.m. A remembrance ceremony will follow at 9 a.m., on the northwest corner of the Whitten Building at the Linden Basswood Tree , previously dedicated to those who lost their lives. A separate event will be held the following day in the Memorial Rose Garden at FSIS' Alameda District Office, 620 Central Ave., Building 2C, in Alameda, Calif. Expected attendance at the event will be the judge who presided over Alexander's criminal trial, family members of the slain employees, and other officials. FSIS Assistant Administrator William C. "Bill" Smith will address those gathering for observances in Alameda.

Every day, more than 7,800 FSIS field personnel work to ensure the safety of the nation's meat and poultry supply, and FSIS is committed to their safety.

Since the shootings, FSIS has established a Workplace Violence Prevention Taskforce that produced and implemented actions designed to guard against similar attacks. Among changes made, FSIS has identified measures for improving both personal security and worksite security and established the position of Workplace Violence Liaison/Intervention Officer.

FSIS has a website dedicated to the memories of the slain employees at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/FSIS_Employees/
In_Memoriam/index.asp
.


Last Modified: June 18, 2010
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