Slavery is not just happening overseas. In the past 15 years, over 1,000 people have been freed from slavery in Florida's tomato fields. Many of you have joined in our summer campaign, Recipe for Change, to be part of an existing solution. As the summer winds down and we approach the end of the campaign, we want to multiply our numbers so the message is loud and clear: We want guaranteed slavefree tomatoes!Read More
Throughout our Recipe for Change campaign this summer, well be sharing stories about slavery in Floridas tomato fields. We are grateful to the Coalition of Immokalee Workers for providing this story.
Adan is an indigenous Mayan farmworker from Mexico whose first language is Mixe. In Adan's home village, there were no jobs, and he owned no land. With a family to feed, including a child with leukemia needing specialized medical care, Adan joined three friends in 2001 on a journey to Florida in search of work. Read More
One way you can get involved is by writing a Letter to the Editor in your local paper. A thoughtful and pointed Letter to the Editor is one of the most potent communication tools for concerned citizens. The fight for slave-free tomatoes is a movement that matters to every municipality and every kitchen table. And writing to your local paper is a way you can help take a stand against slavery right here in our own country. Here are some tips for writing and submitting your letter:Read More
Look again at this photo. Theres something wrong. Tomato farms that join the Fair Food Program dont have buckets that look like this one. But its not the bucket; its what inside!
The photo shows pickers hauling buckets that are overfilled by the new standards established by the Fair Food Program (FFP). In fields where tomatoes are grown under a Fair Food Agreement, buckets can only be filled to the rim, ensuring that workers are not underpaid and overworked.
According to the independent Fair Food Standards Council, the age-old practice of forced overfilling of picking buckets [was Read More
Just over a week ago, we launched our summer campaign, Recipe for Change, here at IJM. Since then, a number of you expressed your surprise that slavery exists right in our own country, in an industry that touches your own lives. We were surprised to learn that too at first, so we wanted to give you more information about the problem, what's being done about it, and how you can help! Read More
In South Asia, IJM staff partner with local officials to investigate slavery, free victims, and prosecute traffickers. But slavery doesnt just happen overseas; it exists in many forms right here in our backyard, and even makes its way to our dinner tables. In the past 15 years, over 1,000 people have been freed from slavery in Floridas tomato fields, where 90% of American off-season, fresh tomatoes are grown.
This summer, we have a Recipe for Change.Read More
I first heard the term modern-day slavery while sitting in my church pew one Sunday morning. We had invited a representative of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) to talk briefly about working conditions in Floridas tomato fields. I left the service that day wondering if things in Florida could really be that bad. Slavery? This sounded exaggerated. It was 2011 slavery has long been abolished in our country. Two months ago our church offered a site visit to Immokalee, Florida, where we could meet and talk with members of the coalition.
I went. This is real. Modern-day slavery exists within 90 minutes of my home.Read More