Saturday, February 23, 2019

Growers Seek to Weaken H-2 A rules

“I think that this program will affect the wages that we earn and also the benefits that we have and put our jobs at risk. If these changes happen our lives will be much harder. Help us fight back!”   -- Jesus Zuniga, 19-year tomato worker 

Right now, many growers are pushing hard to weaken H-2A regulations to benefit them even more -- with the result of harming US workers. We can't let this happen. The UFW is fighting back in the courts and in Congress. And we're on the ground talking to workers. 
The growers' proposed regulation changes would weaken the laws that require US citizens and legal residents to be offered jobs first. Currently the laws require growers to pay the guest workers roughly the same as domestic workers to keep growers from hiring foreign workers at slave wages. Growers want to change this. Agribusiness lobbyists have gone as far as filing a lawsuit against the Department of Labor to roll back the clock and allow growers to pay lower wages to H-2A guest workers. We immediately filed a request to intervene in the lawsuit. Growers also asked Washington to freeze wages at their current levels and change the methods the government uses to calculate H-2A wages. 
We can't let growers win this battle, exploit guest workers and depress wages for all farm workers. We're walking the halls of Congress fighting these changes and bad bills the growers have introduced. Instead, we're fighting for a real solution that would benefit both farm workers and growers like the Blue Card bill we wrote to you about earlier this month. We are looking for legal remedies to protect the hard-working people who harvest the food we buy at the supermarket. Please make your gift today and help the workers fight back. 

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