News Archives

sexual harassment

For Giving Tuesday, give the gift that gives back… Become a Fair Food Sustainer and help end sexual violence in the fields!

What if you were to wake up tomorrow and the headline read: “Sexual harassment eradicated”?A distant dream, we know.  But what if you could actually help end sexual harassment in the fields, starting today? We have good news:  You can.  Today, for Giving Tuesday, stand with farmworker women and sign up to be a Fair Food Sustainer.As we witness an historic moment of cultural reckoning nationwide, we are all painfully aware that women across country — from Hollywood to the hotel industry — face sexual harassment in the workplace.  We also know that for women in the fields, the rates are particularly staggering.  On non-Fair […]

Read More »

Starting today (Friday, 11/10), the Harvest without Violence Campaign hits New York City!

Farmworker women take fight to end sexual violence to the doorstep of Wendy’s Board Chair, Nelson Peltz…CIW Women’s Group to remind Peltz of his fellow CEO’s words of warning (Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook):  “If you know something is happening and you fail to take action, whether you are a man or a woman — especially when you are in power — you are responsible, too.”Starting today, Friday, November 10, and continuing through Nov. 20th, the CIW’s new “Harvest without Violence” mobile exhibit is hitting the Big Apple! After weeks with no response to the CIW Women’s Group’s powerful letter to Wendy’s Board Chairman Nelson Peltz, farmworkers […]

Read More »

Farmworker women to Wendy’s CEO: “Sexual violence has been our daily bread for decades”…

CIW Women’s Group pens powerful letters to Wendy’s CEO Todd Penegor & Board Chair Nelson Peltz to educate company leaders on farmworker women’s struggle against sexual harassment and assault in the fields, request meeting to discuss sexual violence against women in Wendy’s supply chain face-to-face;Penegor and Peltz’s response to date?  Two weeks of silence, and counting…Also: CIW puts final touches on impressive “Harvest without Violence” mobile exhibit as workers in Immokalee and Ohio allies prepare for next Monday’s big action at Wendy’s headquarters!Two weeks ago, the CIW Women’s Group sent a letter to Wendy’s CEO, Mr. Todd Penegor, and another to Wendy’s […]

Read More »

CNN on Fair Food Program: “How America’s ‘ground-zero’ for modern slavery was cleaned up by workers’ group…”

Alejandrina Carrera, worker on FFP farm: “You’re not going to be harassed, you’re not going to be insulted, you’re not going to be forced to work. There’s more respect now.”In an exceptional video series, CNN Freedom Project lifts up FFP as “most comprehensive social responsibility program in U.S. agriculture”…This week, the award-winning team at the CNN Freedom Project — a new series designed to “amplify the voices of the victims of modern-day slavery, highlight success stories and help unravel the tangle of criminal enterprises trading in human life” — turned its spotlight on the CIW and the Fair Food Program, and the result is nothing short […]

Read More »

EEOC singles out Fair Food Program as “radically different accountability mechanism” in landmark report on harassment in the workplace!

EEOC Select Task Force releases high-level report, recommendations draw heavily on example of enforcement-driven FFP model with focus on education, protected complaint system, and corrective action…Once again, a government body has studied the Fair Food Program model in an effort to address an ongoing human rights crisis.  And once again, the Fair Food Program is singled out as uniquely effective at not just remedying, but preventing longstanding human rights abuses.In 2014, the Chair of the United Nations Working Group on Business and Human Rights hailed the Fair Food Program as “a ground-breaking accountability arrangement,” after members of the Working Group visited Immokalee in the course […]

Read More »
aff5

New York Times talks sexual harassment in the fields, letter cites Fair Food Program’s unique success in preventing abuse!

Sanjay Rawal, director of “Food Chains,” in letter to editor of NYT: “The problem is real. But so is the solution — and it deserves mention.”Earlier this month, the New York Times published a hard-hitting op/ed by two longtime California-based farmworker rights activists, Jose Padilla of California Rural Legal Assistance and David Bacon, an independent author and photojournalist.  The piece, entitled “Protect Female Farmworkers,” took an unblinking look at the problem of sexual harassment and assault of female farmworkers in the US agricultural industry, cataloged the obstacles to remedy for women who have suffered sexual violence and sought justice, and suggested a possible […]

Read More »

What a year it was! 2015 Fair Food Year in Review…

After a year packed with such spectacular highlights, 2016 promises to be a pivotal year for the Fair Food movement…It’s that time of year again, when we take a moment to look back on the events of the past year — on the remarkable progress we have all made together in just twelve short months — and to reflect on what new advances, and challenges, the year ahead might hold for the Fair Food movement.2015 was a banner year in the fight for Fair Food, so much so that choosing which stories to highlight was no easy task!  The year wasn’t a week old […]

Read More »

Building a future without violence in the fields…

CIW, Fair Food Program partners develop unprecedented sexual violence prevention curriculum…In U.S. agriculture, the epidemic of sexual harassment and gender-based violence is well-documented.  In 2012, a study by Human Rights Watch, entitled “Cultivating Fear: The Vulnerability of Immigrant Farmworkers in the US to Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment,” surveyed farmworker women and found that a staggering 80% of those interviewed reported having faced sexual harassment on the job.  In 2013, the award-winning PBS documentary series Frontline released a hard-hitting documentary, entitled “Rape in the Fields,” following a year-long study of sexual violence against female farmworkers from California to Florida.  And just this past September, the EEOC announced a […]

Read More »

Question: What are the three most important elements of a successful social responsibility program?

Answer:  1) Enforcement 2) Enforcement 3) EnforcementThe litany of brutal human rights abuses in corporate supply chains around the globe just keeps getting longer by the day, and more horrifying with each new exposé.Longtime readers of this site are familiar with the extensive history of labor abuse in America’s fields, including Florida’s own “Harvest of Shame.”  From federal prosecutors declaring Florida “ground zero for modern-day slavery” (in the wake of seven prosecutions of forced labor operations that liberated well over 1,200 workers since 1995), to the recent PBS Frontline series “Rape in the Fields,” to the even more recent $17 million EEOC judgment against the […]

Read More »

A cautionary tale: Farmworker women win massive judgment in sexual assault, retaliation case against Florida farm…

EEOC case a powerful reminder of:1) The ongoing epidemic of sexual violence in Florida’s fields outside the bounds of the Fair Food Program, and2) The hypocrisy of retailers and the failure of the corporate social responsibility approach to stop the violence.Last Friday’s announcement of a massive jury verdict in favor of five farmworker women who filed sexual assault and retaliation complaints against Moreno Farms (a small, now defunct eggplant, tomato, and squash farm outside of Immokalee) provides a valuable moment for reflection on the urgent need for justice in Florida’s fields and the failure of existing systems — from the […]

Read More »