Come on in to Westminster

MP’s were invited to ‘come on in’ to Fairtrade at a special event held at Westminster.

Karen meets with Nick Hewer and her own MP, John Grogan (Keighley)

Halifax MP, Holly Lynch is the Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Fairtrade.  Along with MPs from all the parties at Westminster, she met with Fair Trade producers and Fair Trade activists, including Karen Palframan from Fairtrade Bradford Zone and Fairtrade Yorkshire.  The Fairtrade producers were:

Mahyana Sari – Secretary, Arinigata Cooperatives, Indonesia (coffee producers); Marcial Quintero – Coobana, Panama (banana growers); John Joseph ­– Founder and Chairperson, WOFFA, India (coffee producer) and Ketra Kyosiimire – ACPCU (Ankole Coffee Producers Cooperative Union), Uganda.

The gathering was joined by business guru, Fairtrade Ambassador and former Apprentice star, Nick Hewer.  In total 88 MP’s and Peers attended the event; a larger number than expected, which led to the Fairtrade icecream running out.

Holly Lynch MP (centre) welcomes the Fairtrade producers to Westminster

Posted on April 12th, 2018 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Come on in to Oxfam

Oxfam Shops across Yorkshire celebrated Fairtrade Fortnight with window displays and special promotions.  During the fortnight Fairtrade Yorkshire’s Karen Palframan visited her local Oxfam shop in the lovely town of Ilkley.

Karen Palframan (left) and the Chair of Fairtrade Ilkley outside their local Oxfam shop.

Coordinator of Fairtrade Yorkshire, Mark Dawson commented: “Oxfam has once again done us proud during Fairtrade Fortnight.  Oxfam has been there at the start of Fairtrade, without them we wouldn’t be where we are today.  The Fairtrade concept needs the dedicated pioneer organisations such as Oxfam, we know that we can rely on them because they share the same values.”

Posted on April 12th, 2018 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Haworth bakes off

Fairtrade Village, Haworth held a bake off competition to celebrate Fairtrade Fortnight.

Rita of Fairtrade Haworth and Sandy Docherty

On the 3rd March the Little Haworth Bake Off took place and the event was honoured by the appearance of celebrity judge, Sandy Docherty.  Sandy was a contestant in the 2015 Great British Bake Off.  Tables were turned, with Sandy judging Haworth residents’ baking.  Residents were charged with the task of baking using Fair Trade ingredients and there were many very successful bakes.

Posted on April 12th, 2018 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Keeping refugee families together

The campaign keeping Refugee #FamiliesTogether, which is part of ‘Stand As One’ led by Oxfam and Amnesty International, has secured a victory.  On March 16th MPs voted to support a Bill that, if successful, will help keep families together, by proposing important changes to the rules that allow refugee families to reunite in the UK.

The ‘Stand As One’ campaign at York’s Fishergate Fair

This is a huge step forward for refugees in the UK who are desperate to be reunited with their families.

Restrictive government rules are leaving refugees isolated, traumatised and alone in the UK, knowing that the people they love still face untold dangers in other countries.

Thanks to pressure from campaigners and concerned members of the public, 129 MPs have shown true leadership. We’re one step closer to the introduction of new rules, which would mean fewer children have to grow up alone, fewer young women are left stranded in war zones and fewer elderly parents are forced to fend for themselves.

Posted on April 3rd, 2018 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Fair’s Fair

An exciting new book has been published by York Fair Trade Forum.  Edited by experienced educationalists, it is suitable for use in the classroom or by youth groups.

Every Fair Trade group should have a copy (or several).

We all depend on people and countries from far and near for the things we use and eat every day.  What we buy affects the lives of the people who grow, produce and make what we buy.  So, many of us buy fair traded, or ‘Fairtrade’ goods, which give those who produce them a fair price and better working conditions.

There is a long history, in many different countries of people who have helped to improve the lives of producers by selling only goods which had been fairly produced.

Read about just 10 of these courageous and visionary ‘champions’ in this book.

Buy 1-10 copies    £4 each plus postage

Buy 11-20 copies   £3.75 each plus postage

Buy 21 -24 copies    £3.50 each plus postage

Buy over 25 copies    £3.50 free postage

Orders from:

helen@fairtradeyork.com

By post: Book sales c/o Fairer World, 84 Gillygate York YO317EQ

Posted on December 4th, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Stand against ‘Sainsbury’s’ mean decision

In October, Fairtrade campaigners took a stand against the mean decision of supermarket giant ‘Sainsbury’s’ to abandon the Fairtrade certificate for tea in favour of launching their own ‘fairly traded’ scheme.  The new scheme will have a different approach to the distribution of the Fairtrade premium.  Whereas Fairtrade guarantees a premium which is paid to producer groups for them to decide how it will be spent to the benefit of their communities, Sainsbury’s will require that their producers will have to apply to a central committee to receive a premium.  The committee will vet the application, deciding what is in the best interests of the producers.  We at Fairtrade Yorkshire believe that the producers are the best people to decide what their earnings should be spent on.

York Fair Trade Forum members protest at Sainsbury’s York Foss Bank store.

On October 28th there was a national day of action in protest at Sainsbury’s decision.

Check out #NotMyCupofTea on Twitter to see just a snippet of the action: http://bit.ly/2inWPBx

Online, campaigners targeted 85% of stores. Offline, people did a huge amount – from craftivism to improvised drama in the checkout queue.

Posted on November 1st, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Yorkshire’s Holly gives storming performance

The National Fairtrade Supporter Conference was held on 7th October at King’s College in London.

Yorkshire’s own Holly Lynch gave a storming performance, motivating the delegates to action.  Holly, who was re-elected this year as the MP for Halifax (with an increased majority) is Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Fairtrade.

Karen Palframan (National Campaigner rep for Yorkshire) and Holly Lynch MP at the Supporter Conference

 

Holly shared how important it is for Fairtrade groups to engage with politicians, and she also detailed the work of the APPG in promoting the Fairtrade agenda in Parliament.

Thanks also to the other fantastic keynote speakers who informed, inspired and challenged us:

George Kporye, Fairtrade Officer at Golden Exotics Ltd, Ghana and Board member of Fairtrade Africa’s West Africa Network spoke about the impact of Fairtrade for banana workers in Ghana.

Barbara Gwinnett, Chair of the National Campaigner Committee (NCC) spoke about the crucial role of grassroots campaigners in the Fairtrade movement, and how the NCC works with the Fairtrade Foundation to advise on its campaigning work.

Michael Gidney, Chief Executive of the Fairtrade Foundation highlighted the progress of the Fairtrade campaign in changing trade, as well as the key challenges and opportunities for the movement in the coming years.

Dario Soto Abril, CEO of Fairtrade International closed the conference with inspirational words linking the activities in communities across the UK and tangible shifts in living standards in communities around the world thanks to better prices and jobs that Fairtrade brings to millions of farmers and workers.

Posted on October 22nd, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Fact-finding Meg tours Haworth

Haworth, the world’s first Fairtrade Village, was the chosen destination for a Fairtrade fact-finding visit by Megumi Morita from Japan. She is from Zushi, Japan’s third Fairtrade town, which lies on the coast, south west of Tokyo.

Fairtrade campaigners (from left) Ruth Drury, John Drury, Bruce Crowther, Chris Upton, (Megumi Morita,) Karen Palframan, Adrian Farley, Nick Drury, Rita Verity and others met in Haworth to welcome Megumi Morita from Japan.

 

After attending the recent International Fair Trade Towns conference in Saarbrucken with Bruce Crowther MBE, founder of the global Fairtrade Town initiative and Director of the Fig Tree, Megumi came to the UK to discover more about collaborative Fairtrade initiatives in this country.

Haworth Fairtrade Group members organised an informative itinerary, which included visiting West Lane Baptist Church, the Bronte Parsonage, Sonia’s Smile Fair Trade shop and the KWVR station in Haworth. The day started at the church cinema with photos and videos from past Haworth and regional Fairtrade events such as ‘Chuffin’ Fair’, ‘Fair Intents’, the cycling Fairtrade bananas ‘Tour de France’ video (filmed in Haworth for Fairtrade Yorkshire, see www. fairtradeyorkshire.org.uk), the ‘Sit down for breakfast, stand up for farmers’ KWVR steam train Fairtrade breakfast, and this spring’s Fairtrade and Bronte walk from Thornton to Haworth.

Megumi gave a presentation about Zushi’s activities to gain Fairtrade town status and there was time for her to discuss wider campaigning issues with Keighley Fairtrade group member and Bradford Council Fairtrade champion Cllr Adrian Farley, and chair of Bradford Fairtrade Zone, Karen Palframan. Diane Fare hosted Meg at the Brontë Parsonage Museum and explained more about Rev Patrick Brontë and his campaigns for social justice, including better sanitation, education and workers’ rights.

Bruce Crowther confirmed, “It was a pleasure to bring Megumi to Haworth on behalf of The FIG Tree Fair Trade Centre as part of her tour and see how the Haworth campaign is supported by the schools, churches, local authority and businesses. We were both impressed to see the number of Fair Trade events held in and around Haworth since becoming a Fairtrade Town in 2002 and how the campaign connects with the tourist attractions and local heritage. We now have 2,000 Fair Trade Towns in 29 countries.”

Many thanks to Liz Barker and Worth and Aire Valley Magazines for kind permission to reprint this article.  Thanks also to John Sargent for the photographs.

Posted on October 21st, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Baildon Town renewed

The Fairtrade Foundation has renewed Baildon’s Fairtrade Town status.  Baildon has been a Fairtrade Town for 12 years.  In a letter to the Fairtrade Baildon, Adam Gardener of the Fairtrade Foundation said: “We would like to pass on our congratulations and say thank you to everyone who has been involved.  The collaborations with groups such as Friends of the Earth enables you to hold larger events and it was wonderful to see that you managed to raise £160 for Traidcraft Exchange thanks to the generosity of the Co-op and all those involved in the Breakfast. We are really impressed with the clear effort and dedication the town has put in to continually raise awareness and spread information about Fairtrade and to stock Fairtrade goods and products as much as possible.”

Fairtrade Baildon: ready for the Tour de Yorkshire outside St James church

Fairtrade Baildon hit national and international media during the Tour de Yorkshire this year.  Their striking banner was visible as the competing cyclists sped through the town, leading the BBC and other networks to comment on its message to ‘end the cycle of poverty: choose Fairtrade.’

 

 

Posted on August 10th, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Trade renegotiation threats

The renegotiation of Britain’s trade agreements will be an extremely difficult process which is likely to stretch out over the next five years and more.  Those of us who have campaigned on trade issues realise that although this may offer some opportunities there are also immense threats.  Bi-lateral trade agreements have in the past resulted in the collapse of whole industries and sectors of agriculture.

Sylvia of York Fair Trade Forum backs Global Justice Now

 

Powerful trading nations, such as the USA, can insist that the UK turn its back on traditional trade with developing nations; leading to the loss of livelihoods for some of the world’s poorest communities.

Trade negotiations are closely linked to livelihoods.  Jobs both in the UK and overseas are on the line.  That is why we support the campaign by Global Justice Now to introduce democratic accountability for trade deals.

Global Justice Now refer to the intended process of trade renegotiation as ‘Dangerous Deals Being Done in the Dark.’  They call for Parliament and ordinary citizens to be involved in the process.  Given these are the most important decisions affecting our country’s future in a generation, it is unacceptable that trade deals be conducted in secret.  MPs need to be informed about the direction of any trade deals and their constituents should have the right to be involved in a democratic process.

There is mounting concern regarding trade negotiations with the USA which could result in a “taking away of control” on a wide variety of issues such as who else we choose to trade with and environmental, labour and health standards.

Say no to secret trade deals destroying livelihoods.  Back Global Justice Now.

Posted on August 10th, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News