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Students close to kicking Wendy's off campus!
Tuesday, February 19, 2019
Student Union Board of Representatives: “It is the position of the Michigan Union Board of Representatives to not support companies that engage in practices deemed unethical by the Fair Food Program…”
One down, three to go, and the “4 for Fair Food” Tour hasn’t even started yet!
After years of building their case to kick Wendy’s off campus, students at the University of Michigan have won their battle to “Boot the Braids” until the fast-food giant joins the Fair Food Program. The move turns next month’s planned demonstration on the UM campus into a celebration, and sends an unmistakable message to the administrations at other schools where students are demanding that Wendy’s put human rights on the menu, or take its business elsewhere.
With the CIW’s human rights tour just weeks away, a dramatic wave of support for the Fair Food Program surged across the UM community this past month, marked by skyrocketing support for a student petition, overwhelming backing from the Student Government for a strongly-worded resolution, and a powerful statement, quoted above, from the Michigan Union Board of Representatives (which, as it happens, plays a key role in choosing vendors for the university’s massive student union). Even the city of Ann Arbor got in on the action with an unequivocal resolution by the City Council.
Kimberly Daley, a postdoctoral fellow in the School of Public Health at the University of Michigan and member of the Washtenaw Solidarity with Farmworkers group that has taken the lead on the Boot the Braids Campaign, sums up the sentiment on campus in the wake of this momentous decision, with a statement on behalf of the student movement there:
Intrepid students from the University of Michigan post up outside of the campus Wendy’s, urging passing students to join the national boycott in 2016.
"As influential public institutions, our universities have a responsibility to maintain a clear and unwavering moral standard in their business relationships. Wendy’s, as the sole fast-food company that has yet to join the Fair Food Program, has refused to meet that standard. Instead of cheap '4 for $4' meals, as students, we need to see human rights on the menu. Until then, students, university officials and local leaders alike in Ann Arbor have declared that Wendy’s is not welcome on our campus.”
Michiganders have made one thing abundantly clear: Wendy’s has worn out its welcome in Ann Arbor, and will most certainly not be invited back until it cleans up its act and joins the Fair Food Program like the rest of the fast-food industry giants. Now the attention of the Fair Food Nation turns to the other universities on the tour – principal among them UM’s key rival just a few hours away, Ohio State University – contemplating whether to continue doing business with a company as deeply compromised as Wendy’s...