Food AND Medicine’s mission is to organize, educate, and empower workers and our communities in the fight for economic and social justice. Food AND Medicine believes that by working together with unions, farmers, community groups, small businesses, and faith-based organizations we will create solutions and positive change.
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Become A Member
There are many ways you can support and/or participate in our activities. A good place to start is becoming a member of Food AND Medicine. Membership dues are on a sliding scale, from $0 upward, based on what you feel you can afford; suggested annual dues are $35. Many members contribute more in solidarity with our lower-income members.
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Food AND Medicine is a grassroots member-based organization that works to address the root causes of poverty. We strive to:
- Empower and involve those directly affected, to take an active, leadership role in bringing awareness and change.
- Be informed by a knowledge of our community gained through research, listening and outreach.
- Facilitate and sponsor events and educational programs, legislative and workplace organizing campaigns, and creation of alternative economic and cultural structures.
We believe it is an outrage for people in the richest country in the world to be forced to choose between food, medicine or other basic necessities.
We launched in 2002 after an avalanche of mill closures in Eastern Maine to provide support for laid-off union workers. We began with an aggressive, creative campaign to win health care benefits for workers laid off from Trade Adjustment Assistance certified plant closings, the first ever benefits of its kind in the US. As public consciousness of the reality of laid off workers grew, politicians, media, union members, and other concerned citizens all responded to assist union members by donating to give direct aid to laid off workers.
Food AND Medicine has over 500 annual members, primarily in Maine but also people across the country with a Maine connection. We are a diverse coalition of union members, workers and farmers; low-income community members; members of most faith and political beliefs; seniors, students and people of different abilities - all connected by a belief that nobody should have to choose between food, medicine and other basic necessities.
Our name is partially inspired by the 1912 Bread and Roses Strike in Lowell, Massachusetts. This historic strike was crucial in the development of worker rights in the United States. The term, Bread and Roses refers to the right of working people to have not only food or necessities (bread) but also nice things in life (roses).