Across the country we are lucky to have in place a network of organizations dedicated to defending and advocating for the rights of workers in any business operation. These organizations have expertise and sensitivity to worker issues that comes from years of actual experience.
The AJP partners wanted to engage this network not only as advisors in defining and developing the standards, but also as decision makers in certification and local support for certified entities.
Worker representatives play an important role in the certification process for Food Justice Certified farms and businesses. A worker rep visits the fields and facilities of entities seeking certification to conduct interviews with the employees along with the certifier inspector. The worker rep's input is built into the certification decision making process.
Worker organizations also have a lot to offer entities once they are certified. Through the inspection process the employer has an opportunity to develop a relationship with the worker organization, and can call on them in the future for health and safety trainings, legal rights trainings, and other requirements of the AJP standards. Worker organizations frequently offer needed services for businesses and farms, such as translation or mediation.
By involving worker organizations directly in the Food Justice Certified certification process we intend to strengthen community ties, build understanding between stakeholder groups, and increase local capacity to support employers and workers.
If you represent a workers organization and would like to become involved in the Food Justice Certificaiton process, please contact us!