Congressman Eliot Engel Will Visit Campus on Feb. 11 to Discuss Social Justice Issues

Event marks College’s one-year anniversary as Fair Trade College.

In honor of Manhattan College’s one-year anniversary as the first college in New York City to receive Fair Trade College status, U.S. Rep. Eliot L. Engel will visit campus on Monday, Feb. 11 to speak about the Harkin-Engel Protocol.

In particular, Rep. Engel will discuss the progress made in the Harkin-Engel Protocol, which was established in 2001 with U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin to eliminate child and adult forced labor in the growing and processing of cocoa beans.

The Harkin-Engel Protocol resulted in a first-of-its-kind partnership between Rep. Engel and Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa, the U.S. Department of Labor, the governments of Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire, and the international cocoa industry, to assure that cocoa beans and their derivative products were not being harvested and made with forced child labor. Rep. Engel has traveled to Ghana, and witnessed the impact a sustained effort to eliminate child labor can have on a community and a country.

Rep. Engel will also touch on the Hershey Company’s progress in meeting the protocol’s guidelines, and further analyze the company’s goal of ensuring 100 percent of its cocoa is certified by 2020.

“It’s very important for our students to have the opportunity to discuss these economic justice issues with Rep. Engel,” said Lois Harr, director of Campus Ministry and Social Action, assistant to the vice president for Student Life and adjunct instructor of religious studies. “As the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, he has a critical role to play in issues of social justice, a key concern for a Catholic Lasallian school like Manhattan. We look forward to working with Rep. Engel on these issues in the future.”

The event will be held at 11:15 a.m. in Hayden Hall, Room 100. Media interested in attending, please contact Liz Connolly Bauman, director of communications, by email at public_relations@manhattan.edu.