Texas, where heat deaths are at an all-time high, ends water breaks for construction workers

Heat-related deaths are at their highest in decades in Texas, and governor Greg Abbot has a plan to get more of them: end water breaks for construction workers. The Texas Tribune reports that he has approved a law which will eliminate city and county ordinances passed in Austin and Dallas which mandated water breaks for workers.

House Bill 2127 was passed by the Texas Legislature during this year's regular legislative session. Abbott signed it Tuesday. It will go into effect on Sept. 1. … The law will nullify ordinances enacted by Austin in 2010 and Dallas in 2015 that established 10-minute breaks every four hours so that construction workers can drink water and protect themselves from the sun. It also prevents other cities from passing such rules in the future. San Antonio has been considering a similar ordinance. Texas is the state where the most workers die from high temperatures, government data shows. At least 42 workers died in Texas between 2011 and 2021 from environmental heat exposure, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Workers' unions claim this data doesn't fully reflect the magnitude of the problem because heat-related deaths are often recorded under a different primary cause of injury. This problem particularly affects Latinos because they represent six out of every 10 construction workers, according to U.S. Census Bureau data.

"The cruelty is the point" in a stupid cowboy hat.