Worker Abuse Not Just North Carolina's Problem  

According to a press release sent out by the Justice at Smithfield campaign:

Washington, DC Councilmembers Phil Mendelson, Muriel Bowser, Jack Evans, Harry Thomas, Marion Barry, Kwame Brown, Jim Graham and Tommy Wells will introduce a Sense of the Council resolution on Smithfield Foods today that asks area supermarkets, corner stores and other establishments to stop stocking Smithfield pork and other meat products.

Washington, DC is one of the largest markets for products from the Smithfield Tar Heel, North Carolina plant--which has been implicated in abuse of its workers. The DC council members and supports first pledged to help on June 20th, after a kickoff rally on the 19th for the boycott and ad campaign. As the Washington Post reported then:

"Our work here is to make Smithfield uncomfortable," council member Phil Mendelson (D-At Large) said in an interview.

As a Prince George’s County Council member last year, Sen. David Harrington (D-Prince George's), got a resolution passed condemning the Tar Heel plant’s practices. The Smithfield plant in his district is unionized. He said after the rally:

I think that bringing some attention to the situation will help out the workers in North Carolina...I would hope that Smithfield will be compelled for the sake of their workers and sit down at the Prince George's plant and see how a union shop ought to work.

If you’re thinking that this Smithfield company sounds awfully familiar—and you live in Washington, DC—you might have seen one of the new ads at your Metro stop, or heard an ad on your radio station. The ads are part of a new campaign that Justice at Smithfield has launched recently.

Thousands of people in the Washington area have ties to North Carolina. Many family members migrated to the region for better work opportunities and--at times--to escape abusive working conditions. But as supporters of the Justice@Smithfield campaign know all too well, these conditions persist at the world's largest hog processing plant, in Tar Heel, NC.

So this summer, DC area families of Smithfield workers are participating in a major advertising campaign spotlighting injuries and abuses at the plant. The campaign recently unveiled a series of advertisements in select metro stations and bus routes putting a human face on worker abuses at the plant, and urging DC area consumers to consider alternatives to Smithfield products in their local supermarkets.

Here's one of the television ads the campaign has created:

You can find out more about the abuses at Smithfield, Tar Heel, and sign up to help at

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