Fair Trade Organizing Tool

Fair Trade Organizing Tool

This document summarizes ideas on what new trade models should entail. It is the result of open dialogues with UFE friends and partners involved in various aspects of social justice organizing. We consider this to be an education and organizing tool; a work in progress to be built on, changed, adapted, etc, by other groups and organizations. Please use it as a point of reference to build your own communities' particular understanding and ideas about what fair trade might look like. And then, please share the results with us. --Adrian Boutureira at adrian@faireconomy.org.


We believe new trade agreements and trade policies should put the interests and needs of those most effected by economic injustice, such as workers, family farmers, consumers, and the historically marginalized and oppressed, ahead of corporate profits and the economic interests of the wealthy few.

These new trade agreements and policies should:

Ensure that corporations cannot challenge international treaties and agreements; local, state and federal public interest policies; and/or international labor, human rights, health, environmental, and safety laws and regulations.

Promote and enforce the actual implementation of a common gold standard for the rights of workers, Indigenous Peoples, small farmers, consumers and women. The agreements and policies should also advance the autonomy and integrity of the public sector and the full protection of the environment.

Allow for full transparency in all aspects of negotiations and a primary role for the democratically elected officials and other major stakeholders, such as affected autonomous indigenous communities, of all the participating countries.

Accept as their purpose the establishment of trade practices and policies aimed at equally serving the interests of working people in the US and the working people of the trading partner/s.

Include alternative indicators for measurements of wealth and progress other than the GNP and GDP that reflect the importance of accurately measuring adverse effects on human welfare, the environment, and sustainability, such as the Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI).

Begin to move away from the use of Risk Assessment and towards the use of methods that employ the Precautionary Principle as their primary methodology for gauging the impact of natural resource exploitation and introducing potentially hazardous substances in the environment.

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