Answer: Education.  But not just any education, Education for Action!

Farmworkers in Immokalee have made the call – and the Fair Food Nation is answering!  41 new Sustainers have joined the ranks this week – help us get 10 more today!

The Fair Food Program is more than just a certification program, it's a culture change program that is fundamentally transforming what an agricultural workplace can be.  So before the Fair Food Standards Council’s human rights monitors head into the fields with notebooks in hand, before workers pick up their phone to report a complaint, before the "Fair Food Bonus" shows up on workers' weekly checks, there is the worker-to-worker education that makes everything else possible.

When the CIW's farmworker-led education team first stepped foot on a Fair Food Program farm in 2011, we knew a dry lecture on workers’ rights under the Fair Food Code of Conduct wouldn’t do.  Instead, we developed a visually-rich, accessible, multi-lingual, interactive education program that is delivered at multiple points throughout any farmworker's tenure on an FFP farm.  Education starts at the point of hire, as workers both receive a booklet and view a video (both produced by the CIW) their very first day on the job.  The process is then reinforced by on-the-farm education by fellow farmworkers early each season, where the CIW Education Team can take the time to ensure that workers fully understand their rights, because the FFP’s on-farm education sessions are held on-the-clock and paid as time worked.  The FFP’s wall-to-wall education program is designed to ensure workers under the program’s protections not only know their rights, but are equipped to serve as the front-line monitors of their own rights — a key element in the groundbreaking Worker-driven Social Responsibility model — by reporting violations to the 24/complaint line and working in partnership with the FFSC’s auditing team. 

And perhaps most importantly, the FFP’s worker-to-worker education program never stops to rest on its laurels.  This year we celebrated, and then blew through, an important milestone: Our 1000th worker-to-worker education session.  Additionally, more than 300,000 "Know Your Rights" education booklets have been distributed since we started!

As a Fair Food Sustainer, you can join the CIW's tireless Education Team in breaking new ground with the next 1,000 education sessions in the decade ahead!  Click here to sign up to become one of today's 10 new Sustainers.

Our longstanding motto at the CIW — the recipe for our unique success since we started organizing in the early 1990s — is simple: "Consciousness + Commitment = Change."  Creative, interactive education techniques are essential for the first ingredient to take shape. To deliver on that need, our vans travel tens of thousands of miles each year to reach workers in America's most remote fields; our education team spends weeks on the road, conducting back-to-back sessions in the early hours of the day before the sun rises in the sky and workers head into the fields; and we constantly adapt and update our videos, booklets, and other materials to reflect the ever-changing reality of the expanding Fair Food Program. But as we step back this week and reflect on the past ten years — and dream about the future of Fair Food in the decade to come, as we work to expand into new states and crops — we know that achieving our vision still requires one important partner: You.

This week, help us build a foundation for the next 10 years of Fair Food by becoming a Fair Food Sustainer!  You can sign up here.




Imagine a U.S. food system in which farmworkers can feed their own families.

June 23, 2021

  In the last 10 years, the Fair Food Program has put over $36,000,000 into farmworkers’ pockets in Penny-per-Pound bonuses, and eradicated multiple long-standing practices of wage theft.  Imagine what we can do in 10 more years. Farm labor has long been one of the most dangerous, most physically challenging jobs in the United States. It has also been one of the worst paid.  For generations, bottom-of-the-barrel produce prices from major corporate buyers kept farmworkers poor, while widespread systemic wage theft denied them much of the meager income they managed to earn at long-stagnant piece rates.  But if the Fair Food […]

“When farmworkers have the opportunity to transform their work culture on their own terms, they seize it…”

June 22, 2021

One down, nine to go! First day of this year’s Sustainer Drive was a smash hit, with 14 new Sustainers signing up… let’s keep up the momentum! Together, we can build a future without sexual violence for farmworkers from Florida to California. Nearly a decade before the #MeToo movement exploded onto the scene and awakened the nation to the pervasiveness of sexual harassment, farmworkers in Immokalee launched the Fair Food Program and began to make a tangible impact on this age-old problem.  On Day 1 of the FFP, farmworkers established three “Zero Tolerance” violations in the Fair Food Code of […]

Celebrate 10 years of the Fair Food Program by becoming a Sustainer!

June 21, 2021

We have 10 years of Fair Food to celebrate – and 10 days to get ready for the next 10 years. Help us sign up 10 new monthly donors each day through June 30 to build the future of Fair Food, brick by brick! “A watershed moment.” Those were the words that CIW co-founder Lucas Benitez chose to convey the significance of the groundbreaking agreement announced in November, 2010, between the Coalition of Immokalee Workers and the Florida Tomato Growers, the agreement that gave birth to the Fair Food Program.  That hard-fought victory marked a turning point in the history of the […]

OSU breaks faith with students (again), ignores unanimous student government resolution, renews Wendy’s lease…

June 16, 2021

Ohio State University students, in open letter to University leaders: “… it has become increasingly clear that to the Ohio State administration, student voice means absolutely nothing… Ohio State has betrayed students once again and chosen to be complicit in the exploitation of the farmworkers who feed their entire campus, and this country, for up to five more years.”   As long-time readers of this site know, we have chronicled the countless twists and turns of the Wendy’s Boycott — celebrating the campaign’s many victories, and making sense of its occasional setbacks — for over five years now.  The news out of […]

Announcing The First Fair Food Sponsor in the Nation’s Capital!

June 3, 2021

Each Peach Market to become D.C.’s first Fair Food Sponsor, first small independent grocery to commit to groundbreaking farmworker human rights program     Mt. Pleasant grocery store to support Fair Food Program, leading human rights program in U.S. agriculture WASHINGTON, DC, June 3, 2021 – Each Peach Market and the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) will launch a partnership to support the award-winning Fair Food Program (FFP), a worker-driven human rights initiative that protects tens of thousands of farmworkers along the East Coast and Appalachia from abuses ranging from sexual harassment to forced labor.  “Every day, people make important […]

Variety, Yahoo! News, the Wrap highlight CIW’s new collaboration with Anita Hill’s Hollywood Commission!

May 27, 2021

Variety: “Anita Hill’s Hollywood Commission is partnering with CIW, the presidential medal-winning human rights organization, to help ‘create a blueprint to address and prevent misconduct in independent production companies.’” Hollywood Commission Chair Anita Hill: “Building on the existing work of the Hollywood Commission, this partnership will help us… forge a safer and more equitable workplace environment in Hollywood.” News of the CIW’s partnership with the Hollywood Commission has been hitting the headlines!  Yesterday, Variety, Yahoo! News, and The Wrap spread the word about this freshly-launched collaboration, underscoring both the longstanding abuses affecting workers in the entertainment industry and the unique […]

Anita Hill-led Hollywood Commission announces collaboration with the CIW, Fair Food Program!

May 25, 2021

Anita Hill, Chair of the Hollywood Commission: “There are myriad lessons for Hollywood to glean from the approach, execution and success of CIW and the Fair Food Program in eradicating sexual harassment from an industry devoid of accountability and rife with abuse…” Today, we are thrilled to announce a new partnership with the Hollywood Commission, the initiative that formed in the wake of the powerful #MeToo movement that swept through not only the U.S. entertainment industry, but workplaces across the country that had long grappled with pervasive and deeply-rooted issues of sexual harassment.  Drawing on the CIW and Fair Food […]

95.28%! Wendy’s shareholders overwhelmingly vote for social responsibility, human rights…

May 20, 2021

  Massive display of support by shareholders for transparency, real human rights comes following efforts by company to block vote… Now you can take action to support Wendy’s shareholders with easy Click-to-Email to company leaders (see below)! Several months ago, the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany, NY — an affiliate of Investor Advocates for Social Justice (IASJ) and ally of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), both longtime CIW supporters and mainstays in the responsible investment community — filed a shareholder resolution demanding transparency into Wendy’s social responsibility efforts.  The resolution was filed in response to Wendy’s refusal to join the Fair Food Program, […]

ZOOM CALL INVITE: Wendy’s annual shareholder meeting digest with CIW and investor allies!

May 17, 2021

Join farmworker leaders of the CIW, investor allies with the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility and Investor Advocates for Social Justice for a Zoom call on Thursday, May 20 at 12 PM ET  for a report on Wendy’s response to the proposed social responsibility transparency resolution and what’s next in the Wendy’s Boycott!  Over the past several weeks, we’ve hosted a four-part series of web posts on this site to thoroughly explain to our readers why Wendy’s annual shareholder meeting tomorrow is significantly different from the eight others CIW and consumer allies have participated in before.  Namely, the presentation and […]

When it comes to human rights, actions speak louder than words…

May 11, 2021

Next week at Wendy’s annual meeting, shareholders will vote on a resolution demanding transparency into Wendy’s social responsibility efforts — and a true accounting of the the impact of those efforts on workers’ lives in the company’s supply chain.  Today, to help shareholders cast an informed vote, we take measure of Wendy’s claims of social responsibility leadership against a decade-long backdrop of dodging the gold standard for social responsibility in the food industry, the Fair Food Program.  In the run-up to next week’s annual shareholder meeting, Wendy’s released its official “2020 Corporate Responsibility Achievements & Goals” report late last month, […]