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Catholic diocese in Ohio boycotts Wendy’s in support of farmworkers

FARM WORKERS

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Zelda Caldwell - published on 12/04/21 - updated on 12/04/21

Boycott calls for fast food chain to pledge to give farm workers a living wage under decent working conditions.

The Catholic Diocese of Columbus, Ohio, is joining a boycott of Wendy’s in an effort to get the fast food chain to pledge to support the rights of farmworkers to fair treatment, reported the National Catholic Reporter (NCR).

Along with 150 other Ohio organizations and faith leaders, the diocese is calling for Wendy’s to sign up with the Fair Food Program (FFP), a coalition of farmworkers, growers and buyers. Founded 10 years ago in Florida, the FFP advocates for “humane wages and working conditions for the workers who pick fruits and vegetables on participating farms,” according to their website.

“Rooted in the sacredness and dignity of the human person, Catholic social teaching upholds the dignity of work and the fair treatment of people who do the work,” said Erin Cordle, associate director of the Columbus diocese’s Office for Social Concerns.

As reported by the NCR, Cordle said the diocese decided to take part in the boycott to urge Wendy’s to join other fast food chains, such as McDonald’s, Burger King and Subway in enrolling in the FFP.

Other Catholic organizations that have supported the boycott include the Association of US Catholic Priests, Sisters of St. Francis, Sisters of Notre Dame, Catholic Labor Network, and  the Vincentian Ohio Action Network.

“These workers — largely immigrants — are among the most exploited in our society. They deserve a living wage and decent working conditions, including safe workplaces that are free of sexual harassment,” said Clayton Sinyai, executive director of Catholic Labor Network, a national association based in Washington, D.C.

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