Migrant Justice, Ben & Jerry’s Lead Positive Change Through Historic Milk with Dignity Contract Signing
By Sylvia Knight
Good news we can celebrate! On October 3 at noon, Ben & Jerry’s CEO Jostein Solheim signed the Milk with Dignity Contract in front of Ben & Jerry’s Church Street location in Burlington with leaders of Migrant Justice, Enrique Balcazar and others, after more than two years of negotiations. This historic agreement brings fair food concepts to the dairy industry for the first time. The young prophets working in our dairy industry and their allies are making history, working toward a new level of human rights in the dairy industry and cooperation with farmers and buyers for justice.
“¡Si, se puede!” (“Yes, we can!”) was the response to Mr. Balcazar’s messages to us all.
“¡Si, se puede!” (“Yes, we can!”) was the response to Mr. Balcazar’s messages to us all. He also led us in a few moments of silence to remember the tragedy in Nevada. I was so moved to be there alongside farmworkers, Migrant Justice Coordinating Council members, their children, Migrant Justice staff, townspeople, Ben & Jerry’s board members, Vermont Interfaith Action representatives Melissa Battah and the Rev. Earl Kooperkamp, and news crews. “Si, se puede!”
Many thanks to the Mountain readers and online friends of the Episcopal Church in Vermont who signed petitions, marched with farmworkers, and wrote messages to Solheim urging Ben & Jerry’s to sign the Milk with Dignity Contract. Thanks for your solidarity.
Additional information about Migrant Justice can be found online at www.migrantjustice.net.
In the photo: Ben & Jerry’s CEO Jostein Solheim signs the Milk with Dignity Contract.