Farmworkers sue Palm Beach over protest ban

Posted at 12:54 PM, Mar 03, 2016

PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- A U.S. farmworkers coalition is suing Palm Beach, alleging that the wealthy town's ordinances effectively bar the group from its constitutional right to hold a protest near the home of a billionaire fast-food executive.

The Coalition of Immokalee Workers wants a federal judge to allow a demonstration March 12 near the home of Wendy's Company board chairman Nelson Peltz. At issue is the company's refusal to pay a penny-per-pound fee for its tomatoes to supplement some farmworkers' wages.

The coalition says that while Palm Beach's ordinances expressly permit demonstrations, others that prohibit banners and amplified speech are an effective ban.

Palm Beach officials say they will allow the demonstration if the coalition follows town rules.