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Monday, March 30, 2015

Strike halts harvest in Mexico - Protesting low wages, farmworkers avoid fields, block traffic by Arkansas Online

dang, all that for STRAWBERRIES?
I eat these.
I guess it just gives me ANOTHER reason to eat local
It's a sad day when food becomes a f*ing human rights issue.


^^ Yeah, over freakin' STRAWBERRIES

""Our primary focus continues to be toward the well-being of our employees and we are working with local authorities to ensure the safety of our workers and the local community," the statement said.

But produce picker Bernardo Velasco, 47, said his family lives in bleak conditions. His community of dirt streets south of Colonet has no running water. He said he buys five jugs every week so his family can drink and bathe.

Families also point to other reasons for their plight. The border economy has been hard hit as the peso has declined against the dollar, forcing merchants to charge families more for such things as toilet paper and eggs. Velasco said he can't feed and house his family on $50 per week.

"We've been here for years working and working for the same wage. We've had enough," Velasco said.

When Velasco and others stopped a Tijuana-bound bus during the blockade Tuesday night, they took the passengers off and escorted them to a church where they spent the night. "We told them there was no need to be scared," Velasco said. "That we only want a just salary."

But what started as a peaceful protest turned ugly as some people began taking over government buildings and a police station in a string of coastal towns from Colonet to San Quintin. At least one store was looted.

When government forces showed up in convoys, protesters threw rocks, and police fired back with tear gas and rubber bullets. Zaragoza said she saw protesters thrown to the ground and pummeled by police.

Like others, she said police were arresting everyone on the streets, even peaceful protesters such as her. On Thursday afternoon, tensions remained high. Dozens of police officers kept watch on hundreds of people gathered outside a state government building where families awaited word on their arrested relatives and the status of the negotiations."

See the entire article @ Arkansas Online