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Uploaded on Oct 19, 2011
The Coalition of Immokalee Workers represents tomato pickers in Florida, a group with seemingly no power in our society. Yet the CIW has moved some of the largest corporations in the world to pay Florida workers a penny a pound more for their efforts -- which adds up to serious money -- as well as institute safe and fair labor practices.
About Gerardo Reyes-Chavez, leader and organizer, Coalition of Immokalee Workers: Gerardo has worked in the fields since age 11, first as a peasant farmer in Zacatecas, Mexico, and then in the fields of Florida picking oranges, tomatoes, and watermelon. He joined the Coalition of Immokalee Workers shortly after his arrival in the United States in 2000. Since then Gerardo has been a key leader of the CIW, his work focusing both at the community level, mobilizing the Immokalee community around national actions in the CIW's Campaign for Fair Food, and more broadly at the consumer level across the country, raising awareness in support of the Campaign through presentations, workshops, and speeches. Gerardo has helped investigate several modern-day slavery operations, including going undercover to work on tomato farms and interviewing workers who have escaped from violent, brutal operations. He is today a key member of the CIW's negotiating team in talks with retail food and tomato industry leaders and has been instrumental in forging many of the CIW's Fair Food agreements.
This talk opened Session Three: Money for TEDxFruitvale, which was held on October 14, 2011 at Mills College in Oakland, CA. The conference's theme was Harvesting Change, and it focused on farmworkers, labor and other social justice movements, and fair labor practices in business. http://www.tedxfruitvale.org/
About TEDx, x = independently organized event:
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)