STATEMENT: CAP’s Zoe Willingham Applauds Sen. Booker and Reps. Haaland and Pingree’s Visionary Framework for a Just Food System

Washington, D.C. — Today, Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) along with his colleagues in the U.S. House of Representatives, Reps. Deb Haaland (D-NM) and Chellie Pingree (D-ME), introduced a resolution supporting the Farmers Bill of Rights. The Farmers Bill of Rights includes strong antitrust protections; country-of-origin labeling for agricultural products; and better government services for rural communities. Following the announcement of the resolution, Zoe Willingham, research associate for Economic Policy at the Center for American Progress, issued the following statement:

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has turned its back on America’s family farms, which are struggling to survive. The Trump administration has closed the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration, which was tasked with protecting farmers and ranchers from powerful agriculture monopolies. The administration also gutted the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Civil Rights, continuing a long history of apathy toward racial discrimination within the department. America’s agricultural future requires creating a just food system that values the environment, food access, and the labor of farmers and farm workers over the interests of corporations.

The Farmers Bill of Rights contains a number of key provisions that CAP has endorsed which address these issues and would protect family farmers’ right to such basic needs as fair, competitive markets; the ability of farmers to repair their own equipment; and the opportunity for all farmers to pursue their passion free from discrimination. I applaud Sen. Booker and Reps. Haaland and Pingree for taking a stand for family farmers. This resolution is a vital first step toward a more just and equitable food system.

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