FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PRESS CONFERENCE TO PRESENT NATIONAL RESOLUTION UPHOLDING THE SOLIDARITY OF LABOR WITH FARMWORKERS IN BAJA CALIFORNIA AND THE USA
CONTACT- Sacramento: Al Rojas (916) 712-4251, Fatima Garcia (916) 862-0209 Santa Maria: Pedro Reyes (805) 868-1803
Oxnard: Todo Poder al Pueblo Collective (805) 328-4763
The Bi-national Coalition of Farmworkers is a grassroots collaboration of autonomous, independent community members, families, unions, and social activists who have decided to take a stand in favor of the striking workers in San Quintín, Mexico & Washington, as well as farmworkers residing and working throughout the USA.
We all recognize that this population is severely exploited by unethical multibillion-dollar industries and that their human, civil, and labor rights are violated on a regular basis and are under constant attack. We also recognize the need for our government agencies and representatives to develop stronger oversight and stricter labor, consumer protection, and environmental laws.
The urgency in addressing this issue from a bi-national perspective is due to the fact that while much of the produce grown in Mexico is imported into the USA, the American consumer has been largely in-the-dark about the inhumane slavery-style working conditions of farm labor, ranging from unsafe conditions in the field to squalid housing, in addition to a range of other abuses. Indeed, some of these horrible patterns of farmworker mistreatment have spilled over the border into the United States through the abuse of temporary and guest-worker labor. We are confident that if consumers knew about these conditions, they would join the call to boycott the growers who are guilty of and complicit in these injustices.
Nearly 70,000 farmworkers in the Valley of San Quintín, Baja California (Mexico) have been waging intermittent strikes and organizing road blockades and mass mobilizations since mid- March 2015 to demand an increase in their daily wage from 100 pesos to 200 pesos per day (raise from $7.50 per day to $15 USD), an eight hour workday, healthcare, overtime pay and vacation days, an end to widespread sexual abuse, and most importantly, the legal recognition of their independent union (the Alliance of Farm Workers of San Quintín) as the bargaining agent for these 70,000 workers. These farmworkers, many of whom are indigenous workers from Oaxaca, pick the strawberries, tomatoes, and other fruit, primarily for export to the United States under the label of Driscoll’s through its Mexican subsidiary, BerryMex.
DATE: JUNE 4TH 2015
LOCATION: CIVIC CENTER PLAZA ACROSS FROM SAN FRANCISCO’S CITY HALL
TIME: 10:00 A.M. – 11:30 A.M