by Kirk Woundy
One job that may be worse than no job: Colorado sheep herder.
Colorado Legal Services, a nonprofit that provides free legal help to low-income residents, has just released a report detailing the incredibly depressing working conditions of herders in western Colorado.
No days off, mobile-home living quarters with no running water or electricity, no heating ... all these issues were reported by multiple herders, who are allowed to work for the equivalent of $2 an hour under a federal temporary foreign labor program.
The report, called "Overworked and Underpaid: H-2A Herders in Colorado," is available here. It's a pretty engrossing read, and one that will sadly look familiar to anyone who read a New York Times story (registration required) about herders in Colorado and Wyoming in February 2009.