With Valentine’s Day approaching, did you know that 65% of flowers in the U.S. come from Colombia? Unfortunately, though, cheaper flowers for us mean deplorable working conditions for flower workers: to learn more, watch this video from Cactus, one of our Colombian partner organizations. And take action now to help protect these workers‘ rights!

  • 2/3 of workers have health problems due to exposure to pesticides and toxins (many prohibited in the U.S.).
  • During the high season, many workers have to endure 12-22 hour shifts, six days a week.
  • Members of the 60%-female workforce are often forced to take pregnancy tests and birth control as a condition for employment.
  • Workers are denied their right to collectively organize, bargain and strikedespite the promise that the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement (FTA) would protect workers.

But you can do something about this!

Representative Keith Ellison (MN) currently has a resolution in Congress to recognize February 14 as International Flower Workers’ Day. This includes a commitment to improve conditions for workers and a revision of the Labor Action Plan (a provision of the U.S.-Colombia FTA) to “uphold the fulfillment of strong labor commitments under the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement.”

Call (or write) your member of Congress today and urge them to sponsor this resolution. Help protect human rights in Colombia.

Tell your representative to be in touch with Brieana Marticorena at Rep. Ellison’s office (Brieana.Marticorena@mail.house.gov) to add his/her name to the resolution.