The transformative interchange began during the question-and-answer session at the end of the Chamber’s breakfast, after a lecture on “The Publix Culture” delivered by keynote speaker and guest of honor Dwaine Stevens, Publix Media and Community Relations Manager for North Florida. During the session, two guests posed questions regarding Publix’s refusal to meet with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) and join their Fair Food Program, which, among other history-making human rights achievements, would guarantee living wages for the Florida workers who harvest Publix’s tomatoes and would help end modern day slavery in Florida’s fields.
The first such question came from Dr. Richard MacMaster, a member of Emmanuel Mennonite Church and organizer with Interfaith Alliance for Immigrant Justice, who had awoken at 5:00 AM that morning and driven all the way from Gainesville, Florida to hear Mr. Stevens speak.
Dr. MacMaster asked Mr. Stevens why Publix – a company that prides itself in family values and giving back to the community – is continually unwilling to meet with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers and join their Campaign for Fair Food. read more | audio