Portrait of Ramon Torres

Portrait of Ramon Torres

Ramon Torres, 30, rallies a crowd of farmworkers and students in opposition to Sakuma Farm’s H-2A guest worker permits outside of the Skagit Public Utility District building on Monday. Torres is the president of Familias Unidas por la Justicia (Families United for Justice), a Latino community group composed of farmworkers that are involved in a labor dispute with Sakuma Bros. farm. Torres and over 300 farmworkers at Sakuma Berry Farms went on strike 9 months ago, demanding a living wage, an end to basic human rights violations including wage theft, racist and abusive treatment in the field, and lack of benefits, among other things. Shortly after negotiating some small pay raises with the farm owners, the workers went back on strike. Ramon claims the owners went back on their agreement, and Familias Unidas is calling for a boycott of Sakuma berries until they receive a legally binding contract that addresses their demands. “We are going to continue fighting until we have a contract,” Torres said. “This contract is going to benefit our families, and these families, well we the Latinos—if we don’t do anything ourselves nobody is going to do anything for us. We have to raise our voices.”

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