Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Why I Care

Hey its Ginger!

Today I wanted to talk about how I learned about fair trade things, and why I care now.
I knew about fair trade for a long time because of Ten Thousand Villages in Red Bank where my sister volunteered and I spent a lot of time in. Even though this was a great source of information it never really hit me until I went.

on a social justice trip to Dominican Republic the summer of 2010. On this trip I went and visited a fair trade factory in Villa Altagracia that makes Alta Gracia clothing. There, a manager explained how these workers got fair wages, fair rules and a clean environment. The workers seemed happy and friendly toward us (they couldn't talk more than just a smile or wave because they were working). Alta Garcia, the fair trade clothing line, is affiliated with over 175 collages and universities.
After going to the factory I met with people who work in this Fair Trade factory that used to work in sweat shops. They described (through a translator) some of the things they used to go through every day to keep their job. They described violence in the factory, workers weren't allowed to take breaks (not even a bathroom break), no sick days, Pregnant women were fired.

and that's only the things I can remember.

So when I came back to the U.S.A. I felt like I had to do something. Even if it was just sharing experiences and knowledge. something.

At the end of the meeting with the workers, someone asked, "what can we do to help?" the answered, "talk. tell people about whats happening. Then try and influence people to buy things from fair trade consumers. Anything will help"

to learn more about Alta Gracia clothing line visit this website