Beltway IMC is a mess, but I was able to upload an article to it. Today I went to part of the DC Social Forum at Catholic University of America.
I wrote out a transcript of the workshop and posted it. Here is a portion of it from a man named Salvador from the Woodbridge Worker's Committee:
I represent the Woodbridge Workers Committee. I’m going to tell you my personal story and the story of the town that I come from. I come from a town; our main work is to grow coffee in Puebla. About 15 years ago, the price of coffee came down. At first, it was 50 cents a kilo (and is much lower now). Many times we have to abandon our lands because it is no longer profitable to cultivate coffee, and so many of us who were involved in that kind of work went to a bank to ask for a loan, often leaving our title to the land with the bank in order to be able to grow our product. And, those of us who are no longer able to sustain our work have to turn our lands over to the bank. So, we are forced to come north to this country and leave our families and our land. We come in order to be able to resolve our economic situation and to take care of our families. We come here leaving our children, our families, our wives…
In Woodbridge alone, this is my personal story, but I imagine this is the story of my brothers and sisters across Central and South America. In Woodbridge alone, there are 300 of us who come from that one town. In my personal case, we suffer many things, all of us do, in my personal case, my father gave me his blessing to come north. I will not see him again. I came to pay for his leukemia expenses, but he died. We were not able to help; when I return, I will not be able to help him. We have come here to work honestly, to struggle so that our families will have what they need. We come to suffer dangers, and they suffer there without us. Part of our experience here is to come here to work and to struggle to organize as workers to struggle for our rights.
Thank you for your attention.
Read more and support them as they host a delegation from Oaxaca this week - protest at the Mexican embassy, Tuesday, March 6, 4PM, at the Mexican Embassy and the night before for a reception at Alfishawy People's Media Cafe. For more, follow the previous link.