Boycott Watch
Boycotting the Bell - Hunger strike rolls into Taco Bell HQ
Boycotting the Bell - Hunger strike rolls into Taco Bell HQ
   Tomato pickers in Immokalee, Florida have been boycotting Taco bell because of the low wages they receive for their labor. Federal law exempts migrant workers from minimum wage laws, but that did not stop the late migrant farm worker representative Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers 40 years ago.
   Today's battle is not the table grape, but the tomato. Tomato pickers have not received an increase in wages in about 20 years (See supporting documentation below). The 40 cents per 32-pound bucket wage means workers have to hand pick 2 tons of tomatoes for a $50 a day wage with no benefits. The January 2001 U.S. Department of Labor report to Congress states that the median income of these workers is $7,500 per year, which is far below the poverty line.
   Nobody has listened to the workers, so they took a page from the history books. On Thursday, February 20, 75 workers and their allies left Immokalee for Irvine, CA, crossing the country on the way to an unprecedented hunger strike outside Taco Bell headquarters.
   The hunger strikers are demanding that the fast-food giant Taco Bell, a subsidiary or Yum! Brands, Inc. provide a fair wage for their labor.
   Yum! Brands, Inc., formerly knows as Tricon Global Restaurants, Inc., changed its name on May 16th, 2002 to "reflect its expanding portfolio of restaurants and opportunities". Yum! Brands, Inc. trades on the NYSE under the ticker symbol YUM. A Fortune 300 company, Yum! Brands, Inc. operates KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, Long John Silvers and A&W restaurants worldwide.
   Boycott Watch made several attempts to contact Yum! Brands for comments, but no calls or emails were returned. Boycott Watch has therefore concluded that based upon the information we received from the Coalition of Immokalee workers and the lack of response from Yum! Brands, that the information provided us is accurate, and is not challenged by Yum! Brands.
   Boycott Watch still welcomes comments from Yum! Brands, and reminds Yum! Brands that not responding does make them look bad.
Supporting documentation:
Facts and Figures provided by the Coalition of Immokalee workers
Boycott Borchure provided by the Coalition of Immokalee workers
Coalition of Immokalee workers web site
Sample of Media Reports:
La Prensa San Diego
Palm Beach Post

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