* LIGHTNING RAIDERS ; EXCELLENT punk single from '78 featuring STEVE JONES and PAUL COOK *
SLAUGHTER and the DOGS
WHY BOYCOTT TACO BELL ? WELL FOR ONE REASON THEY ARE A LARGE PART OF THE ANIMAL HOLOCAUST, SEE THIS ARTICLE FOR OTHER REASONs -
This is the press release from the Coalition of Immokalee Workers and the Student Farmworker Alliance about the Taco Bell protest/rally that was held in Orlando on April 1 and the reasons for the boycott of the fast-food giant.
PRESS RELEASE For Immediate Release
Date: Monday, March 26, 2001 re: Farmworkers, students launch national Taco Bell boycott contacts: Lucas Benitez, Romeo Ramirez, Coalition of Immokalee Workers (941) 657-8311, mobile (941) 821-5481; Brian Payne, Student/Farmworker Alliance, (941) 867-9127
FARMWORKERS AND STUDENT ALLIES TO ANNOUNCE NATIONAL BOYCOTT OF TACO BELL, CALL FOR END TO "SWEATSHOPS IN THE FIELDS"
Following five weeks of informational protests at university towns across Florida, the Coalition of Immokalee Workers and student allies will formally announce the national Taco Bell boycott at Orlando rally in front of Taco Bell restaurant
Immokalee, FL -- On the heels of spirited protests in Gainesville, Bradenton, St. Petersburg, Tallahassee, and Miami, farmworkers from the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) will be joined by student, religious, labor, and community supporters in Orlando this Sunday for the formal launching of the national Taco Bell boycott.
Farmworkers from Immokalee, the heart of Florida's $600 million tomato industry, will gather with supporters for a protest outside of the Taco Bell restaurant located at 4225 E. Colonial Dr. starting at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 1. Like those around the state before it, the Orlando protest promises to be a colorful assembly of people, art, puppets, pinatas, tomato costumes, and music. The formal announcement of the boycott will be made at 3 p.m. at a rally following the protest.
"Taco Bell is a multinational corporation with $5.2 billion in annual sales, and is part of Tricon, the world's largest restaurant system with $22 billion in annual receipts," said Lucas Benitez of the CIW. "To a significant extent, Taco Bell's tremendous global revenues are based on cheap ingredients for the food they sell, including cheap tomatoes picked by farmworkers in Florida paid sub-poverty wages. [According to the latest U.S. Department of Labor report to Congress, farmworkers earn a median annual income of $7,500, with no benefits and no legal right to earn overtime or collectively bargain with their employers.] Well, we as farmworkers are tired of subsidizing Taco Bell's profits with our poverty. We are calling for this boycott today as a first step toward winning back what is rightfully ours -- a fair wage and respect for the hard and dangerous work we do."
"When students and labor rights activists first brought widespread public attention to the inhumane working conditions and slave wages in the factories that make sneakers for Nike, Nike denied any responsibility for those conditions, just as Taco Bell has done to this point in response to our protests," continued Benitez. "But today, Nike has had to move off of that position, bending to the pressure of its own consumers to improve wages and working conditions in those 'independent' factories. Nike's ability to dictate those changes lies in its buying power as a major client of those overseas factories. Taco Bell has that same kind of power in the foodservice industry today, and we believe that Taco Bell, like Nike, will ultimately understand the importance of listening to the voice of its own consumers."
"When you look at the difference in power between us as farmworkers and Taco Bell as a billion-dollar corporation, you may think we are crazy for taking them on," said Romeo Ramirez, also of the Coalition. "They have all the wealth and political power, and we have only one weapon. But that weapon -- the truth -- is the most powerful thing on earth," continued Ramirez, "so we are certain that we will prevail."
"As Taco Bell's target market," added Brian Payne of the Student/Farmworker Alliance, "students are in a unique position to dedicate our resources and creativity towards helping Taco Bell realize the importance of the farmworkers' role in its success and, therefore, the company's responsibility for improving the wages and working conditions of our state's tomato pickers. Thousands of students from across the state are prepared to stand in solidarity with farmworkers in their struggle for dialogue and a living wage."
* DEBBIE HARRY, SUZI QUATRO, and JOAN JETT *
WOW WHAT A PICTURE !