[Denverfairfoodannounce] Chipotle Campaign Launch at Market Street Station
robert at sfalliance.org
robert at sfalliance.org
Wed Nov 14 22:49:27 EST 2007
There's only two and a half weeks before this action. Let's get the word out!
Email all the listserves you're on, make announcements at meetings, flier, tell
your friends and family.
-Please Forward Widely-
Save the Date! Saturday, Dec. 1st, Denver
Join us for this key action that will launch the Campaign for Fair Food in
Denver targeting Chipotle Mexican Grill for its continued refusal to address
farmworker exploitation and human rights abuses in its tomato supply chain.
WHAT: Rally and Demonstration for farmworker justice and launch of the
Denver-area Chipotle Campaign
WHEN: Saturday, Dec. 1st, 11:00am
Market Street Station
16th St. and Market
Chipotle Mexican Grill
16th St. and Blake
(across the street from the Market Street Station)
BACKGROUND: Denver-area allies of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW;
www.ciw-online.org), representing a broad spectrum of Colorado residents, are
announcing our intensified efforts to demand that Chipotle address the human
rights crisis in the fields faced by workers who harvest tomatoes that fill its
tacos and burritos. In solidarity with the CIW a community-led organization of
mainly Latino, Haitian, and Mayan Indian farmworkers based in SW Florida we
are calling on Chipotle to truly live up to its "Food With Integrity" creed.
The lively rally on December 1 taking place just blocks from Chipotle corporate
headquarters will launch these efforts.
Farmworkers who pick tomatoes in the fields of Florida are among this countrys
most exploited workers: they earn sub-poverty wages, have no right to form
unions or to benefits of any kind, and have not received a significant raise in
nearly 30 years. At the current rate, Florida tomato pickers must harvest over
TWO AND A HALF TONS of tomatoes just to earn the equivalent of minimum wage for
a 10-hour workday. In the most extreme cases, workers are held in modern-day
slavery and forced to work against their will.
Through hard-fought campaigns, the CIW and its allies reached groundbreaking
agreements with both Yum! Brands (parent company of Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, KFC
and others) and McDonalds, establishing improved wages, human rights
protections and a voice for farmworkers in these companies tomato supply
chains. These agreements created a working model that the CIW has sought to
expand to the rest of the fast-food
industry. Many fast-food chains, however, continue to resist the progress toward
a more modern and just agricultural industry in Florida.
Chipotle Mexican Grill has refused to even discuss this issue with the CIW,
stating that its not convinced farmworkers have it so bad. Chipotle, by
continuing to leverage its bulk purchasing power and profiting from cheap
tomatoes without regard for the deplorable conditions faced by the workers who
pick them, is delaying the hopes of thousands of farmworkers to enjoy dignified
Chipotles refusal comes in stark contrast to its marketing of itself as a
leader in advancing ethical purchasing practices within the fast-food industry.
As part of its "Food With Integrity" philosophy, Chipotle encourages its
suppliers to pursue healthy practices and uses meat only from animals that have
been raised humanely. Chipotle founder and CEO Steve Ells recently stated that
"we decided long ago that we didn't want Chipotle's success to be tied to the
exploitation of animals, farmers, or the environment." Yet Chipotle refuses to
take simple steps to eliminate the exploitation of farmworkers.
"Food With Integrity" is either a holistic vision which includes decent working
conditions for the thousands of men and women who harvest the tomatoes that end
up in Chipotle's burritos, or it's just another cynical marketing ploy designed
to cash in on a fad. It can't be both.
The CIW has stated: "We are tired, in the words of Martin Luther King Jr., of
relying on the good will and understanding of those who profit by exploiting
us." Join us in telling Chipotle that justice delayed is justice denied, and
that "Food With Integrity" must include "Work With Dignity" and human rights
for the farmworkers in its tomato supply chain.
Sponsored by: Denver Fair Food Committee, a broad coalition of Denver-area
organizations working in solidarity with the CIW
For more information: robert at sfalliance.org, 505-980-4220
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