Women of CIW call on fast-food chain to end support of gender-based violence

On one wall of the Harvest Without Violence mobile exhibit, a quilt displays messages in three languages written by women in the Coalition of Immokalee Workers. 

Women members of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers are in Columbus this week. Until 5 p.m. today the their new Harvest Without Violence mobile exhibit will be stationed in the South Oval on the Ohio State University campus. 

The OSU campus location is fitting. The university's administration has chosen to renew its contract with Wendy's to keep one of its stores on campus, despite the fast food chain's refusal to join the CIW's Fair Food Program. 

The mobile exhibit highlights gender-based violence, which the Fair Food Program has made great strides to eliminate in Florida's fields. Instead of joining the program, Wendy's decided to stop sourcing its tomatoes from Florida farms. Instead, they are buying tomatoes from growers in Mexico, where sexual harassment, rape, child labor, and slave labor are still rampant in the agricultural industry.

While 25% of women experience sexual harassment and sexual violence in the workplace overall, in the agricultural industry more 80% of women are subjected to these abuses.

The Harvest Without Violence exhibit will be at the North Market on Saturday, October 21 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., and in the parking lot of First Congregational Church on Sunday. 

The CIW is also organizing these events in Columbus (click the links for more information):

Sunday, October 22: Interfaith Service to End Sexual Violence in the Fields

Monday, October 23: Harvest Without Violence: Boycott Wendy's Protest