In the nation's capital this week, a series of ads against Smithfield Foods are appearing on buses and metro stations. The official kickoff is scheduled for Thursday when the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, the Washington D.C. NAACP and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference will join with injured Smithfield Foods workers to introduce the campaign.
The objective, say organizers, is to reveal what they call "worker abuse" at Smithfield's pork processing plant in Tar Heel, N.C. Washington, D.C. was selected because it's a major Smithfield market.
The ads provide a worker's personal testimony of injuries sustained on the job and encourages consumers not to buy Smithfield pork products.
"It's another case of UFCW trying to use outside pressure to get Smithfield to let the UFCW represent employees without holding a secret ballot election conducted by the NLRB," says Dennis Pittman, Smithfield spokesperson told Meatingplace.com. "This (ad campaign) could harm the people they claim to represent."
The ads are part of the UFCW's ongoing "Justice at Smithfield" program. The union has been trying to gain a foothold at the facility for nearly 16 years, notes Meatingplace.com.
Pittman did add that Smithfield officials will review the individual cases of the injured employees featured in the campaign.