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How inequality contributes to people doing 'Dirty Work'

The pandemic may have sharpened the definition of "essential" workers, but there are lots of jobs out there that someone has to do, and most of us are glad it isn't us.

It's not just that they can be physically demanding, but they can also be morally troubling: think drone pilots, prison guards, and the people who work the kill floors in slaughterhouses.

These jobs and others are showcased in a book by journalist Eyal Press, Dirty Work: Essential Jobs and the Hidden Toll of Inequality in America. The book points out that many of the workers would prefer not to do them, but financial or immigration or social status keep them on the job.

The author joins us to talk about a work burden that falls more heavily on low-income workers, people of color, and undocumented immigrants.

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The Jefferson Exchange is Jefferson Public Radio's daily talk show focused on news and interests across our region of Southern Oregon and Northern California. Angela Decker is the senior producer, Charlie Zimmermann is the assistant producer, and Geoffrey Riley hosts the show.