"This is the beginning, this is not the end," Sanders said this week in announcing he and Kennedy would ask the Government Accountability Office to determine whether the workers are getting paid as much $12.50 per hour as the tomato industry contends it is paying, The Miami Herald reported Wednesday.
'"We have broken ground on this issue," Sanders said. "We are going to stay on this issue."
Most farms guarantee workers at least $6.79 per hour but actually pay based on the number of 32-pound pails they fill. Workers typically get a token worth 45 to 50 cents for each bucket, the newspaper said.
The Florida Tomato Growers Exchange has worked against the Coalition of Immokalee Workers' efforts to get fast-food chains to agree to pay an extra penny per pound more for their tomatoes. Some fast-food companies, such as Taco Bell, have agreed to the extra cost, while others, such as Burger King, have refused.
The growers group's executive vice president, Reginald Brown, says the workers are fairly paid.