–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–
ADVISORY for Thursday, June 12
Management Official Blows The Whistle On Human Rights Abuses At Smithfield Packing — People Of Color Targeted In Illegal Company Effort To Suppress Workers
Atlanta Area Kickoff Point For Witness: Justice @ Smithfield Community/Consumer Action Campaign — King Historic Site Hosts Premier Of Documentary Video of Human Rights Abuses at Smithfield Plant
Thursday, June 12, at 6 p.m. (EDT)
Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site, 450 Auburn Ave., Atlanta
ADVANCE BRIEFING AND COPIES OF VIDEO AVAILABLE
Atlanta-area consumers put millions of dollars of Smithfield products into their shopping carts every month without giving a second thought to the workers who suffer, sweat and struggle to make those products at Smithfield’s largest production facility. That’s about to change.
As a key Smithfield Packing market area, Atlanta is the kickoff point for a new campaign: Witness: Justice @ Smithfield — that will bring religious, civil rights, community and worker activists to food stores alerting both the retail operators and customers about the human rights abuses at Smithfield’s plant in Tar Heel, N.C.
Retail food operators and consumers will be asked to send a message to Smithfield — a message demanding an end to management tactics that have brought a jury verdict finding the company in violation of the Ku Klux Klan Act, a decision from a federal administrative law judge finding systematic and pervasive labor law violations, and a Human Rights Watch report finding the company in violation of international human rights standards.
A new video — featuring a behind the scenes expose from one of the highest ranking management officials ever to testify against a company in a National Labor Relations Board trial — documents the abuses at Smithfield, including the targeting of African-American and Latino workers. African-American workers were fired and threatened with replacement by Latino workers and, Latino workers were threatened with INS action and told that African-American workers were attempting to eliminate them.
Speakers drawing inspiration from the life and works of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. will call for a 21st century civil rights movement to bring human and economic rights to the workplace, and to end the kind of abuses that exist at Smithfield Packing in North Carolina.
The Witness: Justice @ Smithfield speakers: Rev. Joseph Lowery, Georgia Coalition for People’s Agenda; Linda Chavez-Thompson, AFL-CIO Executive Vice President; Doug Dority, UFCW International President; Honorable Sam Zamarripa, Georgia State Senator; William Lucy, Coalition of Black Trade Unionists. More to be announced.
Honorable Shirley Franklin, Mayor of Atlanta, will provide a special welcome to the Witness: Justice @ Smithfield kickoff event.
The United Food and Commercial Workers Union
Jill Cashen of, 202-285-3857