Journalist Bernice Yeung in Slate Magazine on the Fair Food Program: “…a #MeToo-era marvel that other industries are rapidly trying to adopt, a novel approach that not only creates real consequences for harassment but also prevents it from happening at all.”

On the one-year anniversary of the Harvey Weinstein revelations, Slate Magazine dedicated a feature-length article to the question: “Has [the #MeToo movement] actually led to any significant changes in workplace policies and culture”?  Drawing on the expertise of investigative journalist Bernice Yeung  (author of the recently released book,  “In a Day’s Work”), Slate published “What Hollywood Can Learn From Farmworkers,” exploring the ways in which “many low-wage workers were taking novel approaches to ending workplace sexual harassment and violence long before #MeToo.”

The article is based on an excerpt from Yeung’s groundbreaking book, updated for Slate, that explains how two groups of workers — farmworkers with CIW and janitors with SEIU-USWW — have changed their own industries from the inside out, and why other industries should pay attention.  We have included just a few of the article’s highlights below, but it is absolutely worth a full read.  You can find the article in full here.

What Hollywood Can Learn From Farmworkers

Long before #MeToo, tomato pickers in Florida were rethinking how to end sexual assault in their industry—and seeing results.

… Here’s how it works: The Coalition of Immokalee Workers persuades growers to sign on to the program, which means they must abide by a strict code of conduct that includes better pay and zero tolerance for sexual harassment. In exchange, these growers are given an opportunity to sell to retailers such as Whole Foods or Taco Bell, which have also promised to only buy tomatoes from Fair Food farms. The program, which began in Florida, has expanded to operations in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and New Jersey, as well as pepper and strawberry crops in Florida. Dairy workers in Vermont have also launched the Milk With Dignity Program based on the Fair Food model.

Built-in accountability for meeting Fair Food standards helps drive its success. Workers, who are regularly provided on-the-clock training related to their rights, can surface complaints through various avenues, such as a confidential complaint line and education sessions. With workers functioning as the eyes and ears of the program, the model has addressed everything from wage problems to sexual assault in the fields...





Fair Food Program featured in Congressional Women’s Caucus Hearing on Workplace Sexual Harassment…

September 20, 2018

Judge Laura Safer Espinoza, Executive Director of the Fair Food Standards Council, joins panel of speakers at bipartisan hearing seeking solutions to sexual violence and harassment at work… Last Wednesday, September 12th, the bipartisan Congressional Caucus for Women’s Issues held a high profile hearing on the problem sexual harassment and assault in the workplace.  Hosted by Representatives Susan Brooks (R-IN) and Lois Frankel (D-FL), the hearing was the third in a series on sexual harassment.  Here is an excerpt from the Women’s Caucus’ press release announcing the hearing: News Release WASHINGTON, DC – As the one-year anniversary of the Harvey Weinstein […]

Celebrating Patrick Kaufman: father, teacher, leader in the Fair Food Nation…

September 18, 2018

Patrick Kaufman, left foreground, with his son, Jeremiah, bottom right, are pictured with fellow fasters during the CIW’s Return to Human Rights Tour in March of 2017.  They joined 17 other members of the Columbus, Ohio, community and students from the University of Ohio in support of the Wendy’s Boycott with a week-long fast.  Patrick passed away a few days ago of Stage IV Melanoma, leaving behind his wife and three children. Today, with incredibly heavy hearts, we mark the passing of Patrick Kaufman, a passionate, unwavering voice for justice and leader of the Fair Food Nation in Columbus, Ohio.  […]

Fair Food Nation celebrates Labor Day in the streets of Miami with a dual Wendy’s/Publix protest!

September 14, 2018

Vilmarie Cintrón-Olivieri, Co-moderator of the PC(USA) General Assembly on Labor Day: “We are here in solidarity walking alongside of you, boycotting, because we know it’s the right and just thing to do. Count on the Presbyterian Church, because we are here for you…” Keeping with a longstanding tradition, the Fair Food Nation celebrated the invaluable contribution of workers to the country this past Labor Day the best way they know how: By fighting for farmworkers’ fundamental human rights in the fields! On the Sunday of Labor Day weekend, scores of farmworkers and Fair Food allies hit the streets of Miami […]

The New York Times highlights Model Alliance’s RESPECT Program!

September 10, 2018

NYT: Model Alliance’s RESPECT Program offers “set of comprehensive industry standards developed by models to govern behaviors, rights, payment and recourse, as well as a detailed list of consequences and processes…” Model Alliance latest to deploy WSR model in fight for rights and dignity in the workplace; RESPECT Program developed in conjunction with CIW, Worker-driven Social Responsibility Network… As the #MeToo movement continues to make waves across the country, the Model Alliance is leading the fight to give fashion models a real voice at work.  Aiming “to promote fair treatment, equal opportunity, and more sustainable practices in the fashion industry, from […]

MUST-SEE NEW VIDEO: Time’s Up leader Alyssa Milano narrates powerful new Fair Food Program video!

September 4, 2018

“The truth is, much of the food you buy is harvested under conditions that would shock you… But there is hope on the horizon for America’s farmworkers…” Help us share this hard-hitting new video far and wide! This year, the CIW is celebrating Labor Day like never before – with a dramatic new video, and a high profile social media campaign designed to launch it nationwide!  The video – equal parts animated and live action, and narrated by actor and activist Alyssa Milano – is taking the world of social media by storm.  It tells the story of the harsh […]

EEOC case alleges rape in Florida’s strawberry fields, reminding us of an ongoing reality on farms beyond the protections of the Fair Food Program…

August 20, 2018

“No employee should be subjected to sexually degrading conduct as a condition of employment,” Robert E. Weisberg, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Miami district office, said in a statement. “Migrant farmworkers are no exception.” Longtime Fair Food activists may be familiar with a thought experiment that CIW members often share in public presentations that is designed to put you, the consumer, at the edge of the field where the food you buy is harvested.  The mental exercise – set in a classic roadside farm stand, like the one pictured below, brimming with freshly picked, local fruits and vegetables – is […]

ACTION ALERT: Student/Farmworker Alliance announces “Pulling Back the Curtain on Wendy’s” Week of Action, Oct. 22-28!

August 17, 2018

Today, we bring you big news from the Student/Farmworker Alliance, the ever-growing, national network of students and young people who have been keeping the heat cranked up on Wendy’s all year long!  This week, students announced their October National Week of Action, with the theme of “Pulling Back the Curtain on Wendy’s”.  So mark your calendars, Fair Food Nation, because on October 22nd – 28th, students will be bringing the call for human rights in the fields straight to Wendy’s doorstep on campuses and in the streets across the country! Here are the full details on the upcoming action – […]

Compass Group USA announces first generation of Fair Food Chefs on new website!

August 15, 2018

Russell Szekely (above), VP of Canteen Culinary – a part of Compass Groups USA – shares his reflections on the Fair Food Program after a visit to Immokalee. Fair Food Chef Paul Ruszat with Morrison Healthcare (of Compass Group USA): “If the sustainability doesn’t start with the people that are growing and picking our food then the rest doesn’t matter.” Today, we bring you news of a brand-new campaign by one of the Fair Food Program’s participating buyers, Compass Group USA!  Compass serves 9.8 million meals every day at its countless different venues, from school lunchrooms to corporate cafes, and […]

This summer, the Fair Food Nation turns up the heat on Wendy’s and Publix in Florida!

August 10, 2018

This week, the CIW and the Alliance for Fair Food (AFF) are announcing a series of Florida summer protests to turn up the heat on Wendy’s and longtime Fair Food holdout Publix Supermarkets ahead of the fall season!  Today, we bring you the AFF report from last weekend’s kick-off action in Sarasota, and the schedule for the rest of the summer (including a protest in Orlando this Sunday!) from the Alliance for Fair Food. The summer action season started off with the first-ever joint protest by March for Our Lives Tampa Bay and the Fair Food Movement, drawing hundreds of […]

New popular education drawings make their debut at worker-to-worker education sessions on Fair Food farms along the East Coast!

August 7, 2018

Hundreds of workers educated in Virginia, Maryland and New Jersey on rights under the Fair Food Program… Today, we bring you an update from the front lines of the Fair Food movement: A report from worker-to-worker education sessions in Virginia and Maryland where, just last week, the CIW Education Team debuted two brand-new drawings, one on the right to a safe work environment, and the other on the right to report abuse without fear of retaliation.  As a quick refresher, in 2015, the Fair Food Program headed north out of Florida and expanded to six East Coast states: Georgia, South […]