Supporting Values of Care & Justice for Farmworkers & Meatpackers
See our RIM Pentecost Resource & Many Others Online HERE.
“Suddenly from up in the sky there came a noise like a strong, driving wind….
And they were filled with the Holy Spirit. They began to speak in other languages and make bold proclamation as the Spirit prompted them. ” Acts 2:2-4
God has sent the unifying power of the Spirit of God and called us to share the Good News, the promise of Jesus who reveals the essential unity of all things in the Creator of all things. We have been strengthened by the Spirit of love that calls us to build communities where “there is neither Jew nor Gentile…slave nor free, nor male and female, for all are one in Christ Jesus.” (Gal 3:28)
Stories: Both farmworkers and meatpacking workers—many from immigrant and refugee backgrounds—have been deemed essential to ensure our nation’s food supply. However, they have historically worked in dangerous conditions and close quarters with few protections; with now heightened risks under COVID. Aside from facing lacks of protective equipment and distancing safeguards, shutdowns due to Covid-19 have also brought to light the frequent absence of basic benefits such as sick days and unemployment insurance. To date, 14,000+ meatpackers have gotten COVID, in at least 181 plants.
One farmworker, Flor, says: “I work in the fields with tobacco and sweet potatoes, but I’ve been out of work since February because of the coronavirus.” José, a migrant worker who travelled from Florida with his family to work in sweet potato and blueberry fields, says, “Since the epidemic, we don’t have any work, or very little. With the children at home, we have even more expenses. We earn very little as it is, and (it) is not enough.” 4/26/2020, Danica Jorden, Common Dreams, COVID-19 Sweeping Through Ranks of US Immigrant Farmworkers and Meatpackers
- READ this letter from the United Food and Commercial Workers union outlining essential worker protections for meatpacking workers & this letter of support for farmworkers during COVID-19.
- CALL your U.S. legislators to support these priorities at: (202) 224-3121.
- SIGN this letter to ensure worker benefits for farm workers.
- TEXT “ShopSmart” to 23396 to take the #ShopSmart pledge to support our nation’s grocery, retail, & food industry workers.
- SEE National Farmworker Ministry for more ways to help.
Prayer: Eternal God, Creator of the universe, there is no God but You. We stand in awe and gratitude for Your Spirit’s power of persistent love and Your call to abandon division and exclusion. Help us focus, as you did, on the abundance of your love and your desire for love and justice for all of Your children. Amen.
Please support RIM as generously as you are able during this crisis. Give online here by designating to: “Refugee & Immigration Ministries,” or send your donation to: Disciples Refugee & Immigration Ministries, c/o Disciples Home Missions, Attn: Kathy Watts, PO Box 1986, Indianapolis, IN. 46206
THANK YOU for the justice & protection your love makes possible!
In grateful partnership for justice,
Rev. Dr. Sharon Stanley-Rea
Director, Refugee & Immigration Ministries