Grantee Agreement Called A Success For Farms and Workers

Some Vermont dairy workers say their wages and living conditions have improved, thanks to an agreement reached last year between the workers and Ben & Jerry’s, a division of global consumer products company Unilever.

Times are tough on dairy farms around the country, with milk prices declining for the fourth year in a row. But 72 farms that supply Ben & Jerry’s earn a little more by agreeing to follow labor and housing standards.

Enrique Balcazar is a former dairy farm worker and an activist with the group Migrant Justice who helped negotiate an agreement last year called Milk with Dignity.

Speaking through an interpreter, he said the two years of tough negotiation have paid off for farmworkers – and farmers.

“There are farmworkers in the state who, in collaboration with their farmers and with support from the Milk With Dignity Standards Council, are now receiving a day off every week when they previously didn’t have one, who are receiving wages to bring their wages up to the Vermont minimum wage,” he said.

Read the entire story featuring Resist grantee Migrant Justice.