Do you relish a cup of tea when you wake up in the morning? Did you know that the tea you are drinking could be produced by workers who suffer exploitative conditions?
In Assam, the world’s largest tea growing region, there are nearly 1 million tea plantation workers and their families who depend on a meagre cash wage of 126 Rupees a day, that is less than 2 British pounds and lower than the minimum wage mandated by law. In addition, they live in appalling conditions with poor access to basic services like water, health and sanitation, which expose them to malnutrition, disease, and preventable deaths. These conditions are common across most tea plantations in Assam, and result in the region holding India’s highest maternal mortality rate and one of the highest rates of infant mortality.
Tea workers in Assam mostly belong to adivasi or indigenous communities forcibly brought from central India over 150 years ago under British rule. Ever since, workers have been entrapped in a cycle of servitude for generations, depending on their employer for almost every aspect of their lives.
You can help to break this cycle! Bring digniTEA to those who bring you tea!