about the neglect of the hungry and the workers by our food system alliance here, a few interesting reports have appeared.
On Cesar Chavez Day the Inventory of Farmworker Issues and Protections in the United States was published.
A joint effort of a corporate catering company's foundation, the UFW and Oxfam America, this report tells us two things we already knew. Working conditions and compensation for farm workers are not good, and data about their lot in life is scarce. These are two signs of a wider lack of care, I think.
Coverage of the report on KQED's Forum pointed out that regulations in California are stronger than in many other big ag states, and some situations have been improving. Sounds like labor contractors though, are still a concern in many cases. And managers who speak only English, when their employees don't speak either English or Spanish?
http://www.kqed.org/a/forum/R201103310900 has the podcast.
Here are some interesting reflections from one of the fellows who worked on the report, including the difficulty in getting good data on farm worker conditions.
I'm also rather taken with this new report, which covers workers throughout the food system and stresses the need for advocacy:
Read all about it at Green for All.
Perhaps these reports can spur us on here in Sonoma County to do more about workers in growing and producing food, and to see that improved conditions for workers could drive the greening of the whole (an in entire, not a dietary regime) food system.