NEEDED NOW (as well as throughout the Summer and Fall):
Church Volunteers to Serve as Camp Observers
The Farm Labor Organizing Committee (FLOC) launched a summer organizing campaign throughout North Carolina. The Respect, Recognition, Raise campaign has 20-30 organizers going out in teams every evening (except Saturday) to visit with workers in their camps, hear about their working and living conditions, record any grievances to be addressed, and sign-up workers to the union.
FLOC summer organizers, in their visits to tobacco farm labor camps, are encountering situations where workers are being intimidated, even retaliated against, by crew leaders or growers for union organizing activity (i.e. signing a card, or just listening to the FLOC organizers).
WHY YOU ARE NEEDED:
We believe that the tendency to intimidate and retaliate will decrease as it becomes commonly known that Church Volunteers are serving as Camp Observers and accompanying the FLOC organizing teams on some labor camp visits. Please consider making one or more labor camp visits with the FLOC organizers this summer. (“Faith-based” and “Church” are used in the very broadest sense.)
The purpose of this observer project is two-fold:
- to provide a trusted outsider presence to heighten the comfort level of workers by letting them know that people of faith here in North Carolina are paying attention to what is happening to them and care;
- to document, as a third party attester, the experience and any grievances related by the workers to the FLOC organizers.
Your role is to an active observer and record taker. Spanish language proficiency is not required. Individuals or teams of two are welcome.
TO VOLUNTEER: Contact FLOC Organizer Raul Jimenez – firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-262-6741. With Raul, you can determine the evening and other details that work best for you and for FLOC. If you have questions or need further information about this project, contact Raul, Susan Alan at the National Farm Worker Ministry, email@example.com or Dave Austin of Triangle Friends of Farmworkers, firstname.lastname@example.org.
WHEN: For now and throughout the summer; Every evening of the week, except Saturdays – from 5:30 to 9:30 – 11:00pm (plus the drive to Dudley, NC and back). FLOC’s office: 4354 Us Hwy 117 Alt. S. Dudley, NC 28333.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: The Church Volunteer Camp Observer Information sheet is attached. We have also attached a copy of a letter from the North Carolina Department of Justice regarding the rights of farm workers to have visitors in their camps.