“The relationship between the CIW and its supporters is one of the most successful allyships I have witnessed…”

 Alliance for Fair Food intern Violeta Hernandez Padilla during the CIW's 2017 Return to Human Rights Tour. 

Alliance for Fair Food intern Violeta Hernandez Padilla during the CIW's 2017 Return to Human Rights Tour. 

Thanks to the generosity of 120 loyal allies and believers in farmworker justice young and old, from Florida to Washington, we have raised $8,445 in grassroots donations since we began our Wendy’s Boycott Fund campaign in early May. 

This means we’re a third of the way to our hefty $25,000 summer grassroots fundraising goal! 

And with your help, we’ll get all the way there. If you haven’t already, please consider a donation to the Wendy’s Boycott Fund – and ask your friends, your family members, and others who agree that farmworkers deserve to live and work with dignity and respect to join you in contributing to the Fund.

Today, we bring you a heartfelt reflection from Violeta Hernandez Padilla, a student ally from Atlanta, GA who interned with the Alliance for Fair Food this past spring. Grassroots funds make possible the AFF’s internship program, through which we bring young leaders to Immokalee for four months at a time to learn firsthand, and contribute to, one of the most successful human rights struggles of our day:

“My time as an AFF intern was an illuminating experience, and what I learned most about was allyship. When coming to Immokalee, I still wondered what exactly my main role as an ally would entail. During my time with the CIW as an AFF intern, I learned that as an ally, a reliable commitment is necessary. One must listen to the needs of the marginalized group one is trying to uplift and be ready to be called upon to contribute to the movement. The relationship between the CIW and its supporters is one of the most successful allyships I have witnessed, having transformed the agricultural industry in Florida by allowing farmworkers to have a say in the conditions in which they work and the wages they receive. 

Our solidarity with farmworkers has pressured 14 major corporations to join the Fair Food Program, which uproots the causes of exploitation and abuse in the tomato fields of Florida and is steadily expanding into six other states. Regardless, the rights and protections established by the FFP are not guaranteed on every farm. In order for more farmworkers to receive the respect and dignity they deserve, corporations, such as Wendy's, must make the commitment to join the Fair Food Program. We made this argument face to face with Wendy's executives when the CIW, religious leaders, students, academics, and allies attended Wendy's annual shareholder meeting last month. My role was to ensure that our allies were able to gain admission to the shareholder meeting by coordinating proxy tickets, and as a result we had an outstanding presence of 27 people inside the meeting! 

To continue sustaining the work I did coordinating the entry of allies to the shareholder meeting and the work I will continue to do as an ally of the Atlanta area AFF network, make a contribution to the Wendy's Boycott Fund today!”