Farm Labor Organizing Committee, AFL-CIO

1221 Broadway Street ♦ Toledo, Ohio 43609 ♦ Phone: 419-243-3456 ♦ Fax: 419-243-5655 ♦ 4354 US Hwy 117 Alt. S ♦ Dudley, NC 28333 ♦ Phone: 919-731-4433 ♦ Fax: 919-731-4441 ♦

Press Release Contact

June 24, 2010 Ohio: Baldemar Velasquez,, 419-243-3456 North Carolina: Justin Flores,, 919-731-4433

Reynolds American Board Member Resigns Due to FLOC Campaign Surrounding Labor Abuses in Reynolds Supply Chain, FLOC shifts focus to Reynolds’ Lender JP Morgan Chase After months of pressure from the Farm Labor Organizing Committee, AFL-CIO (FLOC), Betsy Atkins resigned from the Reynolds American (RAI) board of directors on June 17, 2010. The labor union, which represents tens of thousands of migrant farmworkers throughout the South East and Mid-West United States, has been seeking a meeting with RAI CEO Susan Ivey to discuss human rights in their supply chain, for almost three years to no avail. Refusing to be ignored, FLOC has sought to engage key figures and corporations linked to RAI, such as Chico’s FAS, Inc., where Betsy Atkins also sits on the Board of Directors. FLOC organized months of public actions pointing out that serving as a board member at Chico’s, which follows a strict “commitment to ethical sourcing,” is contradictory to serving on the Reynolds board, which refuses to address the problems in its supply chain. After much dialogue with Chico’s FAS, Inc., FLOC President Baldemar Velasquez was notified by Chico’s that Betsy Atkins had tendered her resignation. Continuing to pressure RAI into a constructive dialogue, FLOC has recently focused on JP Morgan Chase, a bank with close financial ties to RAI. Yesterday, President Velasquez issued a call to consumers and organizations to pledge to withdraw their funds from JP Morgan Chase and tear up any Chase credit cards if the company continues its refusal to help end the abuses in the supply chain of its financial partner. At a rally and march in Detroit on Friday, June 25th, FLOC will officially announce the beginning of this campaign, building support for a boycott of JP Morgan Chase along with a coalition targeting the bank around the issues of bailout money and home foreclosures. Who: Farm Labor Organizing Committee, national civil-rights leaders, and supporters What: Mobilization outside of Chase bank to protest the financial giant's complicity in the abuse of thousands of farmworkers and to demand a stop to the home foreclosures Where: Gather at Grand Circus Park, Woodward across from Central Methodist Church; March route will travel to Chase building in downtown Detroit (611 Woodward Ave.) When: Friday, June 25th, 9:45am ###

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