Protest in downtown Orlando fights to bring fair wages to Florida’s local farmworkers

It is no doubt that there has been a rise in popularity of the Fair Trade movement, as of late.  Over the past several years, a devoted community of people has generously given their time and efforts to bring awareness to the unjust wages and/or slave-like working conditions of those who work in the food production industry.

On Saturday afternoon, a group of such individuals gathered outside a local Publix to protest against the widely known grocery store chain and their refusal to join in the Fair Food Program’s recent initiative.  The Fair Food Program is advocating for local farmers by asking stores, like Publix, to pay an additional penny per pound of tomatoes sold.  Local farmers are currently receiving 42 cents for a thirty-two pound bucket of tomatoes.  This increase would double their wages.

Although the protest did not yield immediate results, it did shine light on an issue that had been overlooked for too long.

As an avid believer in the Fair Trade movement, I admit it does get tiring remembering what stores are on board with support and which are swindling local farmers.  There is so much going on from a variety of different angles that it has become nearly impossible to live Fair Trade in our society and even in our city.

What I have been trying to do to remedy this over the past few years is to find what I’m passionate about and be an advocate for it.  I find that if I try to get involved in too many things, my efforts are stretched and not as effective as they could be if I were just focused on one or two areas of interest.

I hope that I could spur you into action with an invitation of standing up for the rights of those who cannot stand up for themselves alone.

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