On Church Ave at East 4th Street, there’s a well-stocked market called Golden Farm that many of you probably shop at regularly. And in the past few months, you may have heard a lot about a campaign by Golden Farm workers to get paid minimum wage and receive some decent treatment from their employer. After legal action and several protests have made little headway, this weekend there will be a large coordinated action, including a boycott on Saturday.
Here’s what’s happening this weekend:
Thursday, April 26, 7pm: Community Potluck and Sign-Making Party
P.S. 230 (1 Albemarle Road between McDonald Avenue and Dahill Road)
The potluck is a family-friendly opportunity to meet the workers who have been organizing for justice.
Friday, April 27, 7pm: Candlelight Vigil outside Golden Farm Supermarket
Church Avenue and East 4th Street
Golden Farm workers and their supporters will gather at the store to honor the sacrifices being made to win fair wages and working conditions.
Saturday, April 28: 24-Hour Boycott and Picket
Church Avenue and East 4th Street, midnight to midnight
For 24 hours, Golden Farm workers and supporters will picket the store and are asking their neighbors to not shop at the store during that 24-hour period. The best time to come and show your support is between noon and 5pm. There will be speakers, music, activities, and food.
Contact Alexandra García at 816-824-6985 for more information.
From Councilmember Brad Lander:
For years, workers at Golden Farm were paid less than minimum wage, and denied overtime pay, vacation, or sick days. In 2008, the New York Department of Labor sued Golden Farm for these abuses and found that the store’s owners had falsified documents to hide the stolen wages. This year, we heard that Attorney General Schneiderman was taking on the case.
Unfortunately, these legal actions have not been enough to compel the owners of Golden FarmSupermarket to repay the workers – who cannot afford to wait for the money they need to support their families.
The workers have organized in the community over the last several months, but have not asked us to boycott the store. Instead, they have asked that when we shop there, we tell the store’s ownership that we support the workers and want them to be paid the stolen wages.
But our appeals to Golden Farm’s owners have not been enough.
It is a tough decision to join a boycott of a local store. Golden Farm has been convenient for the neighborhood and a mainstay of the community. But after months of organizing, the workers have been given little choice. And they need our support.
So on Saturday, the workers and their supporters are calling for a 24-hour boycott and picket of Golden Farm Supermarket. It is the culmination of a “Week of Action,” after many months of outreach and protests, that aims to bring the ownership of Golden Farm Supermarket to the table and to ensure that the workers get the money they are legally owed. The store is open round-the-clock, and the workers plan to have a presence there every hour that it’s open.
I hope you can join the workers in their 24-hour boycott of the store, and come by the picket line to show your support. We have many strong local businesses in our community that thrive while offering good service and treating their workers with respect. I hope Golden Farm can be one of those stores.