"Keep using our name to attack and belittle farmworker women who are fighting to keep themselves and their sisters safe from rape in the fields," Milano warns Wendy's.
Alyssa Milano doesn't need to ask where's the beef, because she's the one who has it with Wendy's.
The actress, one of the staunchest supporters and loudest voices of the #MeToo and Time's Up movements, pointed her sizable platform at the fast-food restaurant chain in a scathing Facebook post Thursday morning.
The post came in response to Wendy's calling out female farmworkers who are protesting for safer work environments, among other things.
"Wendy's, in responding to a Huffington Post reporter, stated that these members of the CIW (Coalition of Immokalee Workers) are 'trying to exploit the positive momentum that has been generated by and for women in the #MeToo and Time's Up movement to advance their interests,'" the actress wrote in a lengthy statement. "Wendy's, this is very simple: These women are the #MeToo movement."
The CIW has been active for years in the tomato industry in Florida and nearby states, advocating for humane wages and working conditions for farmworkers by forging a partnership (Fair Food Program) between farmers, farmworkers and retail food companies. While many large companies such as McDonalds, Walmart and Taco Bell have signed on, Wendy's has not. Instead, they shifted their tomato purchasing to Mexico, where according to boycott-wendys.org, "workers continue to confront wage theft, sexual harassment, child labor, and even slavery without access to protections."
"Last week, farmworker women — joined by their families, fellow farmworker men, and scores of supporters from across the country — fasted for five, long days to demand that the restaurant chain Wendy's help to end sexual violence in its supply chain by joining the Coalition of Immokalee Workers' Fair Food Program," Milano wrote in her post. "They have not only shone a light on the routine abuse that farmworker women face, but they have built a proven solution to bring that abuse to an end, and have become an example to millions of women across industry lines."
Hey, @Wendys! If you really want to get on the wrong side of the #TimesUp movement, keep using our name to attack and belittle farmworker women who are fighting to keep themselves and their sisters safe from rape in the fields. My complete statement: https://t.co/T29yzYGh70… pic.twitter.com/txo06Z2FwH— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) March 21, 2018
After a CIW march in New York City following that five-day fast outside the offices of Wendy's chairman Nelson Peltz, the company's spokeswoman Heidi Schauer said, "There’s no new news here, aside from the CIW trying to exploit the positive momentum that has been generated by and for women in the #MeToo and Time’s Up movement to advance their interests."
Milano took issue with Schauer trying to deny these women a part in the #MeToo movement, which has specifically made its mission to give voice and strength to women across all industries. Milano described #MeToo as "a grassroots movement of women from all corners of society exposing the painfully common experience of sexual harassment, misconduct and assault."
She went on to add, "The Time's Up movement was created in part to 'lift up the voices, power, and strength of women working in low-wage industries.' To suggest that farmworker women -- whose voices, power, and strength were on impressive display in front of the offices of Wendy's Board Chairman all last week during their Freedom Fast -- are somehow unwelcome intruders in the fight for dignity and safety for women is downright absurd and unbelievably offensive."
She closed her post with a final statement directed at the fast-food chain, writing, "A final word of advice, Wendy's: If you really want to get on the wrong side of the Time's Up movement, keep using our name to attack and belittle farmworker women who are fighting to keep themselves and their sisters safe from rape in the fields."
Wendy's responded on Thursday to CIW's latest moves, telling Fox News, "This has been an ongoing campaign against Wendy’s and this group is spreading false and misleading information about the brand and our business practices in their continuing effort to extract a financial commitment from us."