Washington Inmates to Help Save Apple Crop

FORKS, Wash. – About 100 offenders from a minimum security work camp near Forks are headed to Eastern Washington to help apple growers with their harvest. A directive by Washington Governor Christine Gregoire yesterday urged assistance amid a labor shortage in Eastern Washington. Gregoire said yesterday “with one in three jobs in Washington state connected to trade, we can’t afford to let these apples stay on the tree.” The Department of Corrections said apple growers will reimburse the state agencies involved so that assistance will not cost taxpayer dollars. Gregoire learned in October that Washington apple growers were unable to hire enough people to harvest the year’s crop before the first frost.