Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Play

The Inflation Reduction Act is signed into law, Florida educators decry classroom politicization, and Colorado River water for Arizona, New Mexico and Nevada will be cut as reservoir levels drop.

Play

President Biden signs Inflation Reduction Act, voters cast primary election ballots in Alaska and Wyoming, and Republicans are calling for the FBI to be defunded, in the wake of the agency's search of Mar-a-Lago.

Play

Infrastructure funding is on its way, ranchers anticipate money from the Inflation Reduction Act, and rural America is becoming more diverse, but you wouldn't know it by looking at the leadership.

NC Faith Leaders to Meet with Reynolds Tobacco on Farmworkers’ Rights

Play

Monday, November 29, 2021   

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Faith leaders are urging tobacco companies to support migrant workers employed by their contract farms.

A group of clergy will meet next week with representatives from the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company about North Carolina farmworkers' right to organize for better wages and working conditions without retaliation.

Julie Taylor, executive director of the Raleigh-based National Farm Worker Ministry, said advocates want British American Tobacco, R.J. Reynolds parent company, to negotiate a memorandum of understanding which would guarantee freedom of association without retaliation and ban contract growers and H2A farm labor contractors from retaliating against farmworkers.

"If they wanted to sign union cards, if they wanted to advocate for higher wages, if they wanted to organize for better living or working conditions," Taylor outlined.

In a statement responding to a letter written by faith leaders earlier this year, R.J. Reynolds said employers must not retaliate against workers for exercising their rights and appreciates the upcoming meeting as a chance to describe its supply-chain responsibility program.

Baldemar Velasquez, president of the Farm Labor Organizing Committee for the AFL-CIO, which represents migrant farmworkers in the Midwest and South, including more than 6,000 workers in North Carolina, explained migrant workers have little recourse because they have been left out of federal labor laws.

He added current North Carolina law makes it illegal for farmers to deduct voluntary union dues from their paychecks, and also prohibits workers from reaching a legal settlement as part of a union agreement.

"Based on the historic abuse, exploitation of agricultural workers in North Carolina, excluded from major labor laws that would protect them and give them the right to speak for themselves," Velasquez asserted.

He added the abuses faced by tobacco farmworkers are well-documented, including inadequate housing, pesticide and nicotine poisoning, wage theft and long work hours without breaks in extreme temperatures.


get more stories like this via email
Lake Mead has been downgraded to a Level 2a water shortage, leading to cuts in water deliveries in 2023. (SpaceEconomist192/Wikimedia Commons)

Environment

Nevada is set to lose 8% of its Colorado River water allotment next year because of perilously low water levels at Lakes Mead and Powell caused by a 2…


Environment

Although President Joe Biden has signed the Inflation Reduction Act into law, many are hoping he will declare a climate emergency to provide further …

Environment

The Bureau of Land Management is kicking off its planning process for managing Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument with several public hearing…


In the past two years, Iowa's Secretary of State says they've made contact with roughly 17,000 people interested in becoming poll workers for elections. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The midterm elections are less than three months away, and in Iowa, recruiting continues for those interested in helping at polling sites, where the …

Social Issues

As Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis defends and expands his call to have military veterans bypass the teacher certification process to become educators…

The Inflation Reduction Act allows Medicare to negotiate drug prices for the first time in two decades. (JohnBlottman/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

President Joe Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act into law Tuesday, providing a means for making prescription drug prices more affordable in the …

Health and Wellness

A relatively new virus known as monkeypox has made its way to the state of Washington. About 280 cases have been reported, with 240 occurring in King …

Health and Wellness

Coloradans struggling economically put their health at risk when they decide not to turn on cooling systems, frequently out of fear of not being able …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021