Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Cesar Chavez' nephew encourages Taylor Farms' workers to keep up the fight

Taylor Farms workers who tried to join the Teamsters despite a vicious anti-union campaign took heart last night from the nephew of the man who organized migrant workers across the country: Cesar Chavez.

Gun-toting goons hired by Taylor Farms so disrupted the Teamster representation election recently that the NLRB impounded the ballots. The company, located in California's Central Valley, is the largest supplier of fresh-cut produce in the United States. About 900 workers, mostly Latino, were involved in the organizing campaign.

About 100 Taylor Farm workers who went to see the new Cesar Chavez film last night were greeted by Federico Chavez, the great labor leader's nephew. Jason Campbell at the Manteco Bulletin interviewed Jose Gonzalez, one of the worker's who wants to join the Teamsters
...knowing that somebody that was so instrumental to the struggle that still rages today was standing in their corner, Gonzalez said, was beyond important – it showed the rights of workers are still important today.  
“All that we want to be able to do is organize and Taylor Farms is making that as difficult as possible,” he said. “We just there to be an opportunity for advancement – an opportunity for people who work hard to be able to support their families. That’s what this is all about – this is a company that could make a low-class family middle-class and not even think twice about it – give us a little bit of stability.”
Federico Chavez greeted the Taylor Farms workers.
Fred Chavez said that it’s not only the right of the workers to assemble and organize, but it’s the only way that they’ll ever advance in a society with a middle class that is exceedingly shrinking. 
“The only way that the individuals in our society are going to get a fair shake is if they organize,” Chavez said. “The individuals who make the decisions have their own agendas, and organizing helps overcome that. 
“It used to be that credit cards and buying a home were the biggest sources of debt that you’d incur, but now our young people are starting off with mountains of it right out of school. They can’t overcome that. 
“By organizing these workers can move towards a living wage and a life that’s better than what is being represented today.”