Last week the Treasure Coast Fair Food Chapter (TCFF) met for the second time to develop plans for several actions in support of the Coalition of Immokolee Workers (CIW) and their campaign to get Publix to sign on to the Fair Food Program. In reviewing some of the hand-outs and my notes, I must say that we are an ambitious group! We’re certainly old enough to know better, so I guess this means we’re just really passionate about helping to educate the Treasure Coast community about the CIW & the Fair Food movement.
Publix is holding a Grand Opening of its newest store in Vero Beach today, Saturday, May 25th. Not enough time to organize a large crowd, but a few of us gathered there this morning to welcome the new manager to the neighborhood & to invite Publix (once again) to the Fair Food Program. We then assembled on the public sidewalk in front of the new Publix on US 1 for a little CIW inspired demonstration highlighting Publix’s unwillingness to come to the table and become a part of a “new day in the fields”.
Other plans discussed at last week’s meeting involve actions in October of 2013, perhaps around Food Day. We will also be organizing several delegations to deliver large 2′ x 3′ signed petitions to the 29 Publix stores along the Treasure Coast just before Thanksgiving; again inviting Publix to the Fair Food table. It really is remarkable that they continue to define the requests of the CIW as “merely a labor dispute”, when it is obvious to everyone else that the Fair Food Program addresses human rights issues.
Wake up and smell the Fair Food winds of change, Publix. It’s a new day in the fields for 90% of farmworkers in Florida. Why continue to do business with the 10% of growers who continue to abuse and exploit their workers? It’s not just about a penny a pound; it’s about humanity.
A formidable delegation of 5 making our presence known! Lots of waves, honks & “thumbs up” for Fair Food! The Publix manager, Lola, was very friendly and promised to send our letters to corporate headquarters. We included a scanned copy of Lani Havens op-ed piece in the Palm Beach Post. Hey, Publix, take note: The Coalition of Immokalee Workers has a new advocacy chapter on the Treasure Coast: Treasure Coast Fair Food. We’re here, we shop, we want Fair Food, and we won’t stop until we get it!