U.S. soccer legend Abby Wambach, NY Times best-selling author & activist Glennon Doyle Melton, visit Immokalee to talk Fair Food Program, ending violence against women!

Glennon Doyle Melton: “We will only buy food for our family from companies who respect the humanity of ALL families. This is one way to love our neighbors…”

Yesterday, as millions of American families flooded beaches and parks across the nation in celebration of the birth of our country, two particularly well-known Americans chose to spend the 4th of July in Immokalee, immersing themselves in the history of what a Washington Post op/ed called “one of the great human rights success stories of our day,” the Fair Food Program.  

Abby Wambach, a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist, FIFA Women’s World Cup Champion and holder of the world record of international goals for both men and women (in fact, if you google “G.O.A.T. of US soccer,” hers is the first picture to come up), was joined by her wife, two-time New York Times best-selling author of Love Warrior, faith leader, and activist, Glennon Doyle Melton, for a visit to Immokalee, just an hour away from their home in Naples, Florida.  Both Abby and Glennon have dedicated themselves and their hard-earned celebrity to shining a spotlight on a host of issues critical to women and families, including everything from fighting juvenile diabetes and epilepsy to supporting low-income single mothers and the health of their children.

Given their history, it is perhaps no surprise that Abby and Glennon chose to spend a good chunk of their 4th of July — a celebration of freedom and the principles of equality and inalienable rights on which this nation was founded — with farmworkers in Immokalee, learning about the horrific abuse faced by generations of women in U.S. agriculture, and the transformative changes brought about by the Fair Food Program.  They sat down with CIW representatives for a conversation on the history of the Immokalee community’s two-decade old struggle for fundamental human rights, after which the circle was widened to include representatives of the Fair Food Standards Council and the Alliance for Fair Food to discuss the future of the movement and the tremendous potential of the Fair Food Program to eliminate violence against women and radically change workers’ lives well beyond its current borders.  And from the moment they walked into the CIW’s community center, one thing was clear: the two dedicated activists were ready to bring their immense talents, their ideas, and their powerful public presence to bear in support of Fair Food.

Glennon Doyle Melton (left) and Abby Wambach (right) listening to CIW members talk about the history of the Campaign for Fair Food.

Of course, after hearing about the unprecedented human rights advances in Fair Food Program fields — and the ongoing, horrific abuses that continue beyond the reach of the Program — our guests were appalled to hear that some retail food corporations still refuse to join the FFP and insist on buying tomatoes and other produce where workers have no voice and women continue to face unchecked harassment and sexual assault in the fields.  Without a moment’s hesitation, both Abby and Glennon expressed their full support for the national Wendy’s Boycott, and a discussion, which will continue in the months ahead, began as to how they can best add their powerful voices to the growing chorus calling on the fast-food giant to support farmworkers’ fundamental human rights.  

The visit ended on a moving note, with a video from the launch of the Wendy’s Boycott itself during the 2016 Workers’ Voice Tour.  This video, taken on International Women’s Day, captures the Fair Food movement’s fierce dedication to justice for farmworkers and for women — a movement to which we are proud to welcome Abby and Glennon:

Shortly after taking off from Immokalee, Glennon beautifully summarized their visit with the CIW:

 

No better way to spend Independence Day than with these freedom fighters- who are transforming agriculture into a industry where all workers are treated with dignity. Abby and I are now aware that the food we buy and refuse to buy makes a difference to women, men and children all over the world. We will only buy food for our family from companies who respect the humanity of ALL families. This is one way to love our neighbors. Thank you, @immokalee.workers for welcoming Abby and me today. We are in awe of your courage and wisdom and community. I’ll share more as soon as my heart and head settle. For now: PLEASE BOYCOTT WENDY’S AND PUBLIX Until they comply with the Fair Food Program. #KitchenTableResistance #justiceforfarmworkers #boycottwendys #fairfoodnation #FairFoodNation @abbywambach

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Clearly, this is only the beginning of what is sure to be a beautiful new partnership.  Stay tuned for more from the Wendy’s Boycott in the weeks ahead!

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