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Look, mom, we’re a real state now!

Oregon, or at least the game, gets a nod on xkcd.

The O covers UFW/Beef Northwest at last

It’s old news for me, as I first wrote about this last August, but hey…nice to see the Oregonian has taken an interest in these farmworker happenings. My own September 07 interview with John Wilson, one of the family owners of Beef Northwest, is here. I remain agnostic on the issue, but I can say […]

Woodburn residents’ son-in-law among seven migrant Oaxacans missing for over a year

An email from one of the ESL teachers with whom I work alerted me to the fact that, for one family I know, the dangers of border crossings have struck really close to home. A family member is among the border crossing casualties of the past year.

Estimates of how many Mexicans die every year […]

Penny Foolish: Schlosser NY Times op-ed discusses migrant worker pay

In an op-ed for today’s New York Times, Fast Food Nation author Eric Schlosser looks at Burger King’s refusal to support a penny-a-pound increase in the price they pay for Florida-grown tomatoes and how this affects the migrant workers who pick the tomatoes. His description of abuses of undocumented migrant workers sounds familiar and provides […]

In the news: Mexican migrants sending less money home

An IHT story this morning discusses the stagnation and decline of remittances from Mexican migrants working in the US. Immigration crackdowns, greater concerns over deportation, and difficulty obtaining work without documentation are among the reasons cited. However, the situation of Mexican migrants goes against the global trends:

In the rest of the world, remittances are […]

United Farm Workers and Beef Northwest follow-up

Earlier this week, I had a conversation with John Wilson, one of the family owners of Beef Northwest. In response to my initial entry on the efforts of their employees to unionize, the business had posted a thorough FAQ on their website; this addresses both the history of the negotiations with UFW and claims made […]

Farm workers protest worker treatment, shed light on beef feeding practices at Beef Northwest

Last Saturday, Beef Northwest employees from Boardman, Oregon, union partners, and members of the faith community gathered at Whole Foods in Portland’s Pearl District to call attention to working conditions and practices at Beef Northwest, the feedlot for Oregon Country Natural Beef, and to seek support for their efforts to unionize. Whole Foods is among […]

United Farm Workers Protest at Whole Foods in the Pearl District

United Farm Workers will be protesting at Whole Foods in the Pearl District this Saturday; while I can’t go myself due to a prior commitment, I hope this event is strongly supported by our community because I think that the people that grow our food should be treated justly. Spotted on the Portland Grassroots Media […]

AgJOBS even more critical with defeat of immigration bill

The following email was circulated this morning by Farmworker Justice and is reposted by permission. AgJOBS is the Agricultural Jobs, Benefits, and Security Act; it addresses immigration issues specific to agricultural workers and includes measures for earned legalization and for reform of the current H-2A guest worker program. See here for more information.

Senate […]

Yo no quiero canned food…

…or “lateria,”* as one Latina farm worker described the kind of food she finds when she needs to access community food banks after her monthly allotment of food stamps runs out. “What do I do with canned beets?”

Although it’s a statement that might potentially raise the hackles of any number of people […]