Inocente Winner of Special Jury Award at the AZ Intl Film Festival!

Matt D'Arrigo, Sean Fine, Dominic, Andrea Nix Fine, Jeff Consiglio, Ryan Brooks, Yael Melamede at the International Premier of Inocente at the Hot Docs Film Festival in Toronto

We are excited to announce Inocente has won the Special Jury Award for Inspirational Filmmaking at the Arizona International Film Festival (click here to see all awards).  It was a wonderful screening on Sunday 4/22, which Inocente and Matt D’Arrigo, the Executive Director of ARTS (A Reason to Survive), attended and did the Q&A.  The film was then screened again in the “best of the fest” series on Sunday 4/29.  The festival reports that the audience loved it and were talking about it long after the screenings.

Several members of the filmmaking team attended the International Premier of Inocente at Hot Docs on Sunday night including directors Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine, Producer Yael Melamede, Editor Jeff Consiglio and Executive Producer Ryan Brooks. Inocente has been getting great reviews at Hot Docs with 2 more screenings to come!

The Torontoist says “It’s hard not to love the titular character in this doc about a young artist thriving in difficult circumstances” and that the film is “Both heartbreaking and uplifting, Inocente isn’t the story of a girl who is trying to make something of herself in spite of her tough circumstances. It’s the story of a girl who is already a thoroughly impressive human being and artist, whether she realizes it or not.”

Dorkshelf reccomeds Inocente “Without Question” saying this short doc is “proof that great things come in small packages.”  It goes on to say the filmmakers have crafted “an awe-inspiring document showing that sometimes the happiest and brightest art comes from the darkest places imaginable.”


Make sure to see it at Hot Docs if you are in Toronto!

4/30/2012 6:30:00 PM (at TBLB3) RUSH TICKETS ONLY
5/4/2012  11:00:00 AM (at ROM)
Tickets and Info:

Montclair International Film Festival

Montclair, NJ
5/5/2012  12:00 pm
at the Clairidge Cinema 1
Tickets and info:

**Producer Albie Hecht and Executive Producer Susan MacLaury will be present for the screening**

Awareness Fest

Los Angeles, CA
5/5/2012 at 8:30 pm
at The Macha Theatre (1107 North Kings Road West Hollywood, CA 90069)
Tickets and info:



US Labor Department Abandons Farmworker Children

1-year-old America in the fields with her family.

It is with great sadness that we report that the US Department of Labor has withdrawn its proposed rule to protect children under 16 working in agriculture, seemingly under pressure from the Obama administration. The restrictions on child labor the DOL had sanctioned, based on expert research and proposed in mid-2011, would have added prohibitions on operating additional heavy machinery, working in silos and grain storage facilities, handling all pesticides, and working in the production of tobacco for children under 16 years of age.

Farms that were owned or operated by families would have been exempt. Somehow this fact was lost on opponents and in the wake of tremendous opposition to the proposed rules from assorted farm organizations and lobbies, Senators Thune and Moran proposed the Preserving America’s Family Farms Act.

Shine wants to express its very great disappointment in this decision by the DOL. There are hundreds of thousands of American children working under unspeakably harsh, and often very dangerous, work conditions that are unheard of in most other occupations. Somehow, the fact that these youngsters are poor and overwhelmingly Latino disallows them to receive the protections they need and deserve. We urge all who care to express their views to their Congressional representatives.

For more information on this issue visit and also see the Human Rights Watch announcement


WHD News Release: [04/26/2012]
Contact Name: Joshua R. Lamont or Elizabeth Alexander
Phone Number: (202) 693-4661 or x4675
Release Number: 12-0826-NAT

Labor Department statement on withdrawal of proposed rule dealing with children who work in agricultural vocations

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor today issued the following statement regarding the withdrawal of a proposed rule dealing with children who work in agricultural vocations:

“The Obama administration is firmly committed to promoting family farmers and respecting the rural way of life, especially the role that parents and other family members play in passing those traditions down through the generations. The Obama administration is also deeply committed to listening and responding to what Americans across the country have to say about proposed rules and regulations.

“As a result, the Department of Labor is announcing today the withdrawal of the proposed rule dealing with children under the age of 16 who work in agricultural vocations.

“The decision to withdraw this rule — including provisions to define the ‘parental exemption’ — was made in response to thousands of comments expressing concerns about the effect of the proposed rules on small family-owned farms. To be clear, this regulation will not be pursued for the duration of the Obama administration.

“Instead, the Departments of Labor and Agriculture will work with rural stakeholders — such as the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Farmers Union, the Future Farmers of America, and 4-H — to develop an educational program to reduce accidents to young workers and promote safer agricultural working practices.”

Inocente Filmmakers and Crew to attend Hot Docs premier

Inocente’s international premier is this coming Sunday, April 29th at 7pm at the Hot Docs International Film Festival!  And the filmmakers are all getting ready to head there for the event!

Directors Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine will be there for the Q&A following the Sunday and Monday screenings.  The Fines have been producing, directing and shooting documentaries for the finest outlets in television and film for the last decade. They have worked in over thirty countries, from dangerous war zones to the Arctic Circle, to bring unknown human stories to the screen. The Fines’ distinctive visual and storytelling style invites human connection, which for the Fines, is the basis for all their work and the necessary catalyst for social change and what makes them such wonderful partners for Shine.  The Fines worked with Shine Global on our first film, the Academy Award-nominated War/Dance, which won the audience award for best documentary when it screened at Hot Docs in 2007.

Producer Yael Melamede, producer of the Academy Award-nominated documentary My Architect will be at Hot Docs all week and Producer Albie Hecht and Executive Producer Susan MacLaury, co-founders of Shine Global, will be in attendance for the Sunday night premier.

Other crew members to be in attendance include Editor Jeff Consiglio (another War/Dance team member!) and Associate Producer Anne Marler.  And Matt D’Arrigo, the founder and Executive Director of the ARTS (A Reason to Survive) program in San Diego that Inocente attends in the film will also be at the 4/29 premier.

Hot Docs International Film Festival

Toronto, Canada
4/29/2012 7:00:00 PM (at TBLB2)
4/30/2012 6:30:00 PM (at TBLB3)
5/4/2012  11:00:00 AM (at ROM)
Tickets and Info:


Inocente in person at the Arizona International Film Festival 4/22

Shine’s current documentary INOCENTE will be at the Arizona International Film Festival this weekend!  And special guests Inocente and Matt D’Arrigo, Executive director of ARTS (the arts program Inocente attends in the film), will be there following the Sunday screening.  This is a wonderful opportunity to meet the special girl who inspired the documentary and hear about the importance of children’s arts programs from both the participant and the provider perspectives.

In addition to the screening, Inocente will be at the Raices Taller gallery opening where her work will be exhibited on Saturday, April 21st.

Arizona International Film Festival

Tuscon, AZ
4/22/12  2PM
at The Screening Room, 127 East Congress (downtown Tuscon)
Tickets and Info:
**Inocente and Matt D’Arrigo will be present for the Q&A following the screening**
**Inocente’s work will be exhibited at the Raices Taller 222 Art Gallery & Workshop opening on Saturday, April 21st at 6pm (218 E. 6th Street Tucson, AZ)


Saving Children’s Lives on American Farms

The Child Labor Coalition Holds a Press Conference on the Proposed Protections (Hazardous Orders) for Children Employed in Agriculture

Washington, D.C. (PRWEB) April 19, 2012

Today, the Child Labor Coalition (CLC) held a press conference to dispel some of the misinformation surrounding the Department of Labor’s recently proposed safety updates to the rules governing child labor in agriculture. The updates would be the first change in 41 years. A panel of experts from the advocacy, education, health and agriculture communities discussed the rules’ potential impact on children’s health and safety. Testimony was also shared by Catherine Rylatt, the aunt of Alex Pacas, a young man who was killed in the 2010 grain engulfment that killed 14-year-old Wyatt Whitebread.

Ms. Rylatt recounted the details shared with her by a friend of her nephew who survived. She said that as the boys were working to break up the corn, “Wyatt started sinking; he was yelling ‘Help me, help me!’” His young coworkers tried to save him. Alex, her nephew, lost his life as well. She went on to note that after the tragedy, “Chris, the 15-year-old who witnessed the death of his 14-year-old friend, kept saying ‘I should have stayed; I should have stayed and helped.’ He doesn’t understand if he had stayed, he would have been dead, too.”

Other experts who provided insight on the proposed updates, included: Lorretta Johnson, Co-Chair of the CLC and Secretary-Treasurer of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT); Norma Flores López, Chair of the CLC’s Committee on Domestic Issues and Director of the Children in the Fields Campaign at the Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs (AFOP), and a former child farmworker; Dr. Sammy Almashat, M.D., M.P.H., Research Associate at Public Citizen; and Bruce Lesley, President of First Focus, a national children’s advocacy organization.

“The American Federation of Teachers believes that it is our responsibility to educate the ‘whole child,’” said Ms. Johnson, who opened the press conference. “This means looking after the well-being of our children, in and out of the classroom. The updates proposed by the Department of Labor are common sense changes that are designed to preserve the safety of children who work on America’s farms.” That sentiment was echoed throughout the press conference.

“As a child working in the fields, I was exposed to dangerous pesticides and machinery. While I was fortunate not to be seriously injured while working, that is not the case for many,” said Ms. Flores López. “That also doesn’t mean I’m in the clear. As a farmworker advocate, I know there are many other serious long-term health consequences associated with pesticides that may affect me in the future.”

Each of the speakers discussed the hazardous orders from their respective areas of expertise. Agriculture, which is consistently ranked as one of the three most dangerous industries for all workers, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is especially perilous for children. In 2010, three-quarters of the children under age 16 who died while working for wages were killed while working on farms.

“From a medical perspective, we know that children are more vulnerable than adults to the myriad hazards encountered on a farm. A child’s mental capacity and judgment is not as fully developed as it is in an adult,” said Dr. Almashat. “As doctors well know, children are not little adults. Their bodies are structured fundamentally differently, leaving them uniquely vulnerable to a number of different hazards.”

The agribusiness and the farm lobby have voiced strong opposition to the protections, resulting in Members of Congress introducing legislation in the House and Senate to block the implementation of the protections. The bills, called “Preserving America’s Family Farm Act,” are not supported by all in the agriculture community though. In a press release the National Farmers Union, while not comfortable with all aspects of the proposed rules, has voiced support for the Secretary’s efforts to better protect farmworker children. At the end of the press conference,National Consumers League Executive Director and CLC Co-Chair Sally Greenberg read a statement prepared by Bryce Oates, a grower from Missouri who recently authored a post with a fellow family farmer Jake Davis, expressing disgust over the untruths being spread about the rules in Footprint Magazine.

“The longer we wait to finalize these protections, the longer kids’ lives are in danger. Children’s safety and well-being must be the number one priority,” said Mr. Lesley. “As children’s advocates, we can accept nothing less.”

About the Child Labor Coalition
The Child Labor Coalition is composed of 28 organizations, representing consumers, labor unions, educators, human rights and labor rights groups, child advocacy groups, and religious and women’s groups. It was established in 1989, and is co-chaired by the National Consumers League and the American Federation of Teachers. Its mission is to protect working youth and to promote legislation, programs, and initiatives to end child labor exploitation in the United States and abroad. A list of the CLC members may be found at

About the Children in the Fields Campaign:
The Children in the Fields Campaign is a project of the Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs (AFOP), a national federation of non-profit and public agencies that provide job training and services for America’s farmworkers. The campaign strives to improve the quality of life of migrant and seasonal farmworker children by advocating for enhanced educational opportunities and the elimination of discriminatory federal child labor laws in agriculture. For additional comment or interview from an AFOP expert, please contact Ayrianne Parks at 202.579.7445 or Parks(at)AFOP(dot)org.