For Immediate Release: Farmworkers Demand to See Ballot Box
FRESNO, Calif., Sept. 4, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Thousands of farmworkers have asked the California Supreme Court to protect their rights. Even though the Court of Appeals ordered that the state Agricultural Labor Relations Board count the workers’ votes, the agency still wants to destroy the ballots and instead force a non-negotiated “contract” on the workers; a contract the workers don’t want and won’t even be allowed to vote on.
Gerawan Farmworkers Protest Outside ALRB Office & Deliver Signed Declarations
Massive Protest By Thousands of Gerawan Farmworkers Outside of ALRB Office in Visalia
Gerawan Farmworker Jose Alvarado Demonstrating Because His Vote Counts! The over 3,000 Gerawan Farmworkers’ Votes Count!
The Jerry Brown-staffed agency created the “contract” it tried to force on the workers, which would have loweredtheir wages and required them to suddenly pay to keep their jobs or be fired. “We never had to pay to keep our jobs before, now they tell us we will be fired if we don’t pay,” said Farm Labor Leader Silvia Lopez.
Meanwhile, the workers demand proof that the ballot box has not been tampered with. They cite ALRB attorney Todd Ratshin’s alarmingly uncertain explanation to the court when judges asked him where the ballots were. Ratshin argued in court that the workers should not have their votes counted even though his agency ran the election, but instead should have his agency’s contract forced on them without letting them choose.
“When we heard that, it reminded us of what ALRB did when a thousand of us went to their office to deliver over 800 hand-signed declarations to demand that our votes be counted,” said Farm Labor Leader Silvia Lopez, referring to a massive protest on August 26, 2014 at the ALRB’s Visalia, California office. “ALRB says they exist to help and protect farm workers, but they ignored us and did nothing with our declarations. Not even a receipt or anything to say they have them. So, if ALRB can bury those, then imagine what they can do with our ballots!”
The ALRB appealed the Court of Appeals decision to the California Supreme Court, which will decide whether to accept that appeal by October 8, 2018. The employees’ attorney wrote a letter to the court to demand that the workers’ rights be respected. The employees attached their own letter signed by hundreds of them.
CONTACT: Jesse Rojas, (559) 492-9421
SOURCE Pick Justice