150 Ohio Faith Leaders Tell Wendy’s: Respect Farmworkers!

Of all America’s workers, farmworkers are among the most poorly treated. That’s why the Catholic Labor Network, the Diocese of Columbus and Ohio Faith in Public Life organized a letter from faith leaders across the Buckeye state urging Wendy’s to clean up its supply chain by joining the Coalition of Immokalee Workers’ (CIW) Fair Food Program.

For two decades the CIW has urged fast food chains to take responsibility for the workers who harvest their tomatoes by signing up for the Fair Food Program. One by one, giants like Taco Bell, McDonald’s and Burger King have joined the program, which ensures that they purchase tomatoes from growers who have signed on to a fair labor code of conduct and provides a supplement to workers’ wages. Only Wendy’s refuses to participate.

For that reason, the CIW has sponsored a boycott of Wendy’s and urges consumers to avoid the Ohio-based fast food chain. Each year in November, the CIW organizes a week of action targeting the hamburger giant.

For this year’s week of action, the Catholic Labor Network joined with several other organizations, including the Diocese of Columbus and the National Farm Worker Ministry, in collecting signatures from Ohio faith leaders on a letter to Wendy’s CEO Todd Penegor. The letter was delivered on Friday, Nov. 19. (CLICK HERE to read the letter and see the signatories.)