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What is the Just Enforcement Act

Oregon has been a leader in building a fair and thriving economy by raising workplace standards. Working families in Oregon have won important victories on a range of workplace rights in the past five years. These victories include a strong, inclusive minimum wage, earned sick leave, equal pay guarantees, and the country’s first Fair Work Week Law – delivering real benefits for our communities. But severe under-enforcement of those laws has diminished
their impact.

The Problem: Rampant Violations, Inadequate Enforcement Every day, bad-behaving companies steal workers’ wages with no remedy. Our state agencies have talented, hardworking staff, but there aren’t enough of them to investigate and prosecute every lawbreaking company.

The Solution: Empowering Workers for Smart Enforcement
We can protect our legal rights and hold corporate wrongdoers accountable by deputizing whistleblowers to bring enforcement actions on behalf of the state. By enacting JEA we can ensure workers can defend themselves.

Secretary of State Bev Clarno, Please Ensure That Our Votes Are Counted This Year!

Dear Secretary of State Bev Clarno,

PCUN has a history of working to educate and motivate citizens who often miss out on voting. For farmworkers and the immigrant community members that we represent, voting is the fundamental cornerstone of a free and democratic society.  As the Secretary of State, you have a unique duty of care towards the integrity of our democracy, and we write to you as the official who is responsible for counting the votes in our state.  

One of the largest obstacles in increasing voting participation has been a growing fear that our people’s votes will not count, or that the process of voting will face interference or intimidation from third party actors. We are deeply committed to an electoral process in which every single voter is confident that they will be able to participate and that their vote will be counted. Given the political and social environment that we are experiencing and the pandemic that our state is navigating, we want to ask important things of you to make sure we provide voters with the best information possible:

  1. How can voters track the status of their ballots (including absentee ballots)?
  2. When will votes be tallied?
  3. If intimidation or obstruction of voters occurs at ballot drop-off locations, how will your office notify the press, voters, and law enforcement to protect voters?
  4. If there are widespread problems with USPS delivering ballots, will you expand the time that ballots can be received in order to not disenfranchise voters?

We appreciate the importance of your job and the historical weight on your shoulders this year.  We look forward to working with you in securing voters’ trust that their ballots will count this election year! 

Best Regards,

Reyna Lopez, Executive Director

PCUN Farmworkers & Latinx Working Families United 

CIPRIANO FERREL DAY – Sept 13th – 25 years an ancestor

Founder and first president of Pineros Y Campesinos Unidos Del Noroeste

PCUNista’s. In the midst of devastation, grief, and loss during COVID-19 and extreme wildfires – we’d like to pause to take a moment to honor one of ancestors, Cipriano Ferrel.

Today, PCUN is fighting harder than ever to ensure agricultural workers – and working class people- are treated with dignity and respect. 34 years ago, Cipriano and 80 farmworkers realized a dream to start a union of their own. Despite not having collective bargaining rights… defying odds, and with a “si se puede” attitude, these workers (many with little to no formal education, and with little money) started what today is PCUN, Farmworkers and Latinx Families United. 

Today on September 13th, 2020 it has been 25 years since Cipriano’s death shocked all who knew him.  He died of a heart attack at his apartment in Salem, about three weeks short of his 47th birthday. He became an ancestor 25 years ago – some say they can feel his spirit at PCUN still today. We believe it’s true, because frankly – the energy of “si se puede”, fighting for workers, and for a better tomorrow is present in every corner of our building.

Today, PCUN continues the struggle to improve the collective lives of agricultural workers, and low-wage workers across the state. By advocating for pro-immigrant and pro-farmworker policies; building strong multicultural coalitions; and advancing an unapologetically political electoral program that turns out Latinx voters – we’ve built one of Oregon’s longest standing Latinx organizations. 

Today, his legacy continues in the womxn, men, and gender non-conforming leaders in the Alianza Poder movement. 

We simply wouldn’t be who we are without Cipriano. Rest in Power Cip. 

Check out Cipriano’s Poem, and his updated biography in the links below.

PCUN Urges Agencies and Employers to Protect Workers During Wildfires

PCUN leadership wrote a letter to agency directors, Commissioners, and the Governor – asking for their support in protecting workers. Outdoor Agricultural Workers were called in to work during Level 2 Evacuations while air quality became more and more hazardous. We need to ensure Outdoor Agricultural Workers have N95 Respirators if they are going to need to work through the conditions; need a site manager to inform them as conditions change (in Spanish, and Indigenous Languages); and need to be able to stay home during Level 2 Evacuations so they can be ready in case they move into Level 3 in order to prioritize their families safety. Here was OSHA’s response.

Link here : https://osha.oregon.gov/news/2020/Pages/nr2020-34.aspx

This response is important. We must understand what the protocol is when these natural disasters occur. Unfortunately, due to climate change, this isn’t the last Oregon will see of red skies and hazardous air. We need to come together as industry stakeholders to ensure people have the support they need in these difficult times. And talk about long term solutions to combating climate change, and protecting workers.

Workers will show up – because we don’t want to lose our jobs, and because we’re proud of the service we provide our state, and our country which is to put food on America’s table. But please, do not take advantage of our dedication, we need Oregonians to consider us too – especially as conditions get worse.

The latest on PCUN’s Farmworker COVID-19 Fund

Update! 

Thanks to your support… we’ve so far raised $69,180 from 361 individuals! Our goal is still $100K we have a little ways to go… we’re still taking donations.

In terms of how much money has been dispersed, we’ve written 106 checks! Twenty of those to individuals, and eighty six of those to farmworker families. We paused the Fund Mid-June – because it had been exhausted. Each family received $500.00; individuals received $250.

Now, we’re continuing to raise funds for the next round of Farmworker COVID-19 Rapid Response support! We will need to replenish this fund. And we won’t stop raising money until we get to $100K! More information to come about round two of farmworker financial relief.

Thank you for your generous donations.

Donate Here