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Mushroom workers to rally Aug. 31 in Seattle

Join Windmill Farms workers, UFW’s Teresa Romero for mile-long ‘living billboard’ and solidarity rally


SEATTLE — More than 100 farm workers will be forming a mile-long “living billboard” along Seattle’s Mercer Street on Thursday, Aug. 31, holding signs that expose the deplorable working conditions at Sunnyside’s Windmill (formerly Ostrom) Mushroom Farms that have driven them to seek the protection and support of a union. They will be joined by United Farm Workers President Teresa Romero and Students for Farm Workers.

TAKE A STAND — All union members and community supporters of mushroom workers and invited to join in the living billboard and rally to demand union mushrooms and justice for Washington farm workers. It will be from 4 to 6 p.m. Aug. 31, starting at the Seattle Center (5th & Mercer) and ending at Safeway (1st & Mercer) with a rally. Please RSVP here.

Sunnyside mushroom workers at Windmill grow the mushrooms you find at many Seattle grocery stores and restaurants. While these mushrooms are branded as the local, ethical choice for a Seattle shopper, the farm workers, who chose to form a union with the United Farm Workers, tell us otherwise.

Under previous and current management, these farm workers have labored under horrendous working conditions. During the workday, workers tell us they face unsafe conditions and oppressive production quotas. Workers who have stood up for fair treatment at the mushroom farm have been met with intimidation tactics such as increased scrutiny, firing, and other methods of retaliation.

The Washington Attorney General recently closed a case against the former owners of the  mushroom farm for $3.4 million for gender discrimination after the company fired 79% of its mostly female workers, posting an ad on Facebook seeking only male H-2A workers in order to have a workforce with fewer labor rights and fewer familial obligations. This dehumanization of farm workers can go on no longer.

A majority of workers at the mushroom farm voted to form a union with the United Farm Workers, yet management refuses to meet with or recognize the union. Agricultural workers lack the same labor protections granted to workers in other industries, and their right to unionize is not protected under federal law.

We must demonstrate public support for this crucial campaign, standing up for our farm workers when the law does not.

UFW President Teresa Romero and Windmill Farms workers at the WSLC 2023 Convention.

Farm workers, who put food on America’s table still endure poverty wages, inadequate housing, unsafe working conditions, and struggle to provide for their families. Rally in solidarity with Windmill workers, acknowledging that their struggle is not an isolated incident but part of a long, entrenched history of systemic oppression.

Join farm workers in protest for union mushrooms, for an injury to one is an injury to all!

CHECK OUT THE UNION DIFFERENCE in Washington: higher wages, affordable health and dental care, job and retirement security.

FIND OUT HOW TO JOIN TOGETHER with your co-workers to negotiate for better wages, benefits, and a voice at work. Or go ahead and contact a union organizer today!