Friday, November 30, 2007

Is Burger King “Penny Foolish”?

Yesterday’s New York Times ran a thoughtful Op-Ed piece, Penny Foolish.” (Thank you to our friend the World Traveler for the heads-up!) Turns out the King isn’t so generous when it comes to paying farm workers, literally, an extra penny. Here’s an excerpt from the article, and a response from the faith community that allows you to help:

“In 2005, Florida tomato pickers gained their first significant pay raise since the late 1970s when Taco Bell ended a consumer boycott by agreeing to pay an extra penny per pound for its tomatoes, with the extra cent going directly to the farm workers. Last April, McDonald’s agreed to a similar arrangement, increasing the wages of its tomato pickers to about 77 cents per bucket. But Burger King, whose headquarters are in Florida, has adamantly refused to pay the extra penny — and its refusal has encouraged tomato growers to cancel the deals already struck with Taco Bell and McDonald’s... ”

A penny? C’mon. Our friends at the Christian activism magazine Sojourners have posted a link that allows you to send an email message directly to Burger King executives urging them to rethink this decision and treat farm workers fairly.

Today’s mitzvah: Visit Sojourners and urge Burger King executives not to be “penny foolish.”

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