Stanford and Corringham aim to be first “fair trade town”

STANFORD and Corringham hopes to become Thurrock’s first “fair trade town” after a local community group have taken up the challenge to achieve all five goals by March of this year.

The fair trade mark (www.fairtrade.org.uk) guarantees decent wages and living conditions for people who grow and make products that we use every day. By buying products with the fair trade mark you can be confident that the producers have not been exploited by ruthless middlemen and that practices like child and slave labour (yes, it does still happen even today) have been stamped out. Fair trade products available locally include tea, coffee, chocolate, fruit and juices, sugar, wine, and more. To achieve fair trade town status, retailers, schools, community groups, and the local authority have to come together to make sure that products are available to buy and use and that the message is getting out there.

A meeting is being held on Thursday 19th January at 8pm for anyone interested in getting fair trade in Stanford and Corringham “off the ground” in 2012. The meeting will be at the 24-7 Stanford community house at 217 Southend Road, Stanford-le-Hope, and anyone is welcome to attend.

Local Councillor Phil Anderson has helped to secure the council’s support for the fair trade town initiative. Phil said “In the current economic climate, I sometimes hear people saying that charity should begin at home. Fair trade is a way that anyone can make a difference, through the decisions they make right here at home. There is often little difference in price, but the difference it can make to people’s lives in communities around the world is immense. I’m delighted to be supporting fair trade in Stanford and Corringham, and I’m really looking forwards to hearing people’s ideas on Thursday 19th.”

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