As I walked past the coffee prep station at my local coffee shop in Los Angeles, I stared at the colorful packets of sugar with a keen eye, noting the lack of a specific Fair Trade seal, a wave of disappointment runs through me. I am on the hunt to find community organizations that serve Fair Trade products to help Los Angeles become classified as the largest Fair Trade City in the US.
The man who inspired Elena, sophomore at LMU and founder of the non-profit, H.U.M.A.I.N, is now 70 years old. He was trafficked from Haiti when he was only 15, a story not uncommon to the men of the Bateyes. He has cut sugarcane from 7 am to 6 pm for 56 years.