October 03, 2012

Fair trade your Halloween

Source: Labor & Social Justice

Halloween shouldn’t be scary. At least not when it comes to chocolate.
                      
Did you know most commercial chocolate comes from cocoa plantations in West Africa where forced child labor has been documented?

Halloween is one of the biggest holidays for chocolate sales in the U.S. This Halloween, you have the opportunity to show the big chocolate companies that you won’t tolerate their kind of exploitation.

How? Fair trade your chocolate. Choose a fair trade alternative that comes directly from small farmer co-ops.

NYSUT members and their families are encouraged to order a Fair Trade Halloween Kit by October 12th to receive in time for Halloween. The kit includes 150 illustrated information cards and 150 Fair Trade Chocolate Minis.

Spread the word about fair trade chocolate by handing out your illustrated information cards to friends, family and local businesses. Give out fair trade chocolate to trick-or-treaters or at Halloween parties.

"In the past, NYSUT members and, in particular, our retirees have participated in reverse trick or treating in great numbers.  For our retirees, it has been a great opportunity to educate their grandchildren in a fun way.  This October again, the NYSUT officers encourage you to remember the child slaves who work the cocoa fields in West Africa, sacrificing their childhoods and suffering great abuse so that companies like Nestles and Hershey’s can make huge profits.

“Our actions during October and throughout the year can have a huge positive impact on the lives of these children,” said NYSUT Secretary-Treasurer Lee Cutler, who oversees the union’s social justice agenda.

Here are some online resources about fair trade and Halloween candy:
http://www.equalexchange.coop/fairtradehalloween

Incorporate Fair Trade into your October with 31 Days of Fair Trade from Global Exchange: 
http://www.globalexchange.org/fairtrade/cocoa/halloween

Learn more about the problems of abusive child labor on farms where most American chocolate originates:
http://www.equalexchange.coop/cocoa-industry
http://www.laborrights.org/stop-child-labor/cocoa-campaign 

Stay in the loop with our online community. We’ll keep you updated on the latest news and events at the New York State Labor Religion Coalition:
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Labor-Religion-Coalition-of-New-York-State/206885469325636