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Post Op-Ed: Fair Food Program helps end the use of slavery in the tomato fields
Check out yesterdays op-ed in the Washington Post written by Holly Burkhalter, IJM vice president of government relations. Holly writes about the importance of the Fair Food Program in ending slavery in Floridas tomato fields.
Since 1997, the Justice Department has prosecuted seven cases of slavery in the Florida agricultural industry four involving tomato harvesters freeing more than 1,000 men and women. The stories are a catalogue of horrors: abductions, pistol whippings, confinement at gunpoint, debt bondage and starvation wages.
Thankfully, those enslaved workers may be among the last found in Floridas tomato fields. Today, virtually all Florida tomato growers have joined the Fair Food Program, which includes a code of conduct outlawing debt bondage and requiring humane conditions of labor and a more livable wage. Shade stations, toilets and drinking water are appearing in the fields, and educators are spreading word about the code to the harvesters.
Read the rest of the article in the Washington Post here.