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La Liga de Las Americas

OCT. 28, 2007 at 3:00 PM

Farmworkers, worker leaders, FLOC community supporters, and pastors from more than a dozen churches in North Carolina will join together for a march/rally to tell R.J. Reynolds to meet with the Farm Labor Organizing Committee to discuss the horrendous conditions suffered by tobacco farmworkers. 

Over the last month, farm worker leaders and spiritual leaders have sought meetings with Susan Ivey, CEO of Reynolds American Inc, the parent company of R.J. Reynolds. She has declined to meet with them citing that RJ Reynolds is not the employers of these workers.

FLOC’s long history in these matters has repeatedly exposed the vertical control companies have over their procurement systems, and FLOC has successfully bargained changes involving all parties in the supply chain.

Baldemar Velásquez, president of FLOC, declared: “This new campaign is long overdue. Despite several studies and investigative reports little has changed over the last several decades for tobacco farm workers.  The fact that they still live at subsistence survival is not only a tragedy but a moral disgrace hidden from the eyes of most Americans.  FLOC will campaign until R.J. Reynolds commits to joining us in addressing this national shame.”

Steward Acuff, Organizing Director of the AFL-CIO says: “Each year thousands of workers are effected by green tobacco sickness, caused by an overexposure to harmful chemicals found in tobacco leaves.  Many of these workers receive little or no medical attention.  The vast majority of NC farm workers are not covered under workers compensation insurance.” 

For more information on FLOC’s RJ Reynolds campaign, go to www.floc.com







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