News Archives

A Year of Victories: May 2008 – May 2009

Campaign for Fair Food at the 2009 Food & Society Conference!…

Also… Must-read op/ed: "Farmworker wages still the issue" This week, representatives of the CIW, the Student/Farmworker Alliance and Just Harvest USA traveled to San Jose, California — the town where Cesar Chavez first started organizing in 1952 — for the 2009 Food & Society conference, an annual gathering that seeks "to identify ways to improve our economy, environment, and society through Good Food Systems." Over the course of the conference, they met with leading advocates for sustainable food and agriculture from across the country to discuss the importance of Fair Food in the movement for good food. In the picture […]

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The response to Governor Crist’s groundbreaking support for the CIW’s Campaign for Fair Food

The response to Governor Crist’s groundbreaking support for the CIW’s Campaign for Fair Food — and shot across the bow of the Florida Tomato Growers Exchange (FTGE) for its stubborn opposition to progress for Florida’s farmworkers — continues to roll in. Here below are, in order, an article, an editorial, and a letter that all, for the most part, say the same thing: We appreciate the good words, now let’s get down to action, because change is long overdue: “Harvest of Hope,” Gourmet Magazine (the picture above is from the Gourmet article) “Crist finally joins battle,” Ft. Myers News-Press editorial […]

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Sustainable food leader Swanton Berry Farm weighs in on human rights crisis in Florida’s fields!…

Also: Op/eds on Governor’s intervention keep coming… As is often the case, when the news is coming hot and heavy, some important stories can get put on the back burner. That was the case with a letter from the sustainable food/organic farm legend Swanton Berry Farm of California that arrived at the CIW just days before last month’s meeting with Governor Crist. Like thousands of letters and emails from across the country at the time, the Swanton Berry Farm letter specifically called on Gov. Crist to take a stand against slavery here in Florida. But its message was much broader […]

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Reaction to Gov. Crist’s stance on farm labor justice strongly positive!…

Governor Crist’s support for the CIW’s Campaign for Fair Food and admonishment of the Florida Tomato Growers Exchange (FTGE) for its opposition to the Campaign have received positive reviews across the board. Below is a letter to the editor in today’s Naples Daily News by the Rev. Russell L. Meyer, Tampa, Executive director, Florida Council of Churches, that is typical of the support for the Governor Crist’s groundbreaking stance: Letter: Crist does the right thing Gov. Charlie Crist is to be commended for meeting last Wednesday with representatives of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, hearing their stories and responding with […]

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Governor Crist letter to CIW: “I support the Coalition’s Campaign for Fair Food,”

Governor Crist letter to CIW: “I support the Coalition’s Campaign for Fair Food,”… “I encourage the Florida Tomato Growers Exchange and its members to participate in the campaign…” Lucas Benitez, CIW: “Today, with the addition of a single voice, the chorus of support for the Campaign for Fair Food grew immeasurably stronger.” Governor Charlie Crist issued a letter to the CIW’s Lucas Benitez and Gerardo Reyes late yesterday. The letter reiterated his support for the Campaign for Fair Food, called on the FTGE to participate in the CIW’s agreements with corporate purchasers of Florida tomatoes, and closed with a reaffirmation […]

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Meanwhile, back at the Campaign for Fair Food…

Two of Holland’s leading musicians drop by supermarket industry giant Ahold (headquartered in Amsterdam) to deliver the Alliance for Fair Food letter!Dutch composer Louis Andriessen and Dutch-American violinist Monica Germino paid a surprise visit to the Amsterdam corporate headquarters of retail food giant Ahold last week. Ahold is the parent company of five major grocery chains in the US (including Stop and Shop and Giant) and six more in Europe. They dropped off a copy of the Alliance for Fair Food letter and a packet of background information on the Campaign for Fair Food. The letter reads, in part:“It is […]

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Food Justice delegation writers do what they do best!

Check out reports from Francis Moore Lappe, Raj Patel, Tom Philpott of Grist.org, and Eric Holt-Gimenez of Food First on March 5th visit to Immokalee… Last week’s visit to Immokalee by some of the leading lights of the growing Food Justice movement generated headlines. But it did more than that. It also opened the eyes of some hardened veterans of grassroots struggles for a fairer food system, bringing many of the writers and activists from that movement into direct contact with the brutal living and working conditions faced by Florida’s farmworkers for the first time. Here below are some of […]

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CIW looks ahead to meeting with Governor Crist…

CIW looks ahead to meeting with Governor Crist… Photo report from Tallahassee theater, press conference online now! As reported in this morning’s Ft. Myers News-Press, “Florida Gov. Charlie Crist announced Wednesday he will talk with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers – a meeting the group has sought for two years.” Here’s an extended excerpt from the article, entitled “Immokalee workers to take slavery tales to Crist”: “On the table: slavery and the labor conditions of Southwest Florida’s tomato harvesters… Slavery, coalition members say, is the extreme end of a broken labor system that begins with subpoverty wages. The group has […]

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Press conference, theater on steps of old Capitol in Tallahassee

Press conference, theater on steps of old Capitol in Tallahassee echo Ft. Myers News Press editorial: “Governor, meet with the Coalition” On the right is a moment of the at the action from the CIW’s theater and press conference on the steps of the old Capitol in Tallahassee Click here for a must-see photo report from the inspirational day of action! (photos by Jacques-Jean Tiziou). And click on the links below for a complete round-up of the media coverage: Media Round-up: “We cannot continue to ignore farmworkers,” Tallahassee Democrat “Governor, meet with the Coalition,” Ft. Myers News-Press editorial “Charlie Crist […]

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CIW THEATER, PRESS CONFERENCE — TALLAHASSEE, FL

  “The play’s the thing Wherein I’ll catch the conscience of the King.” Those were the words spoken by Hamlet as he prepared to stage a play before the king of Denmark. His plan was to re-enact the crime of his father’s murder, touch the guilty party’s conscience (in his case, the king himself), and bring him to justice. We re-enacted a crime of our own this past Monday before the governor of our state — where something has been rotten for decades in the fields that produce the country’s winter fruits and vegetables — with the goal of catching […]

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