United Farm Workers

 

Indentured servitude in 2017? Tell your Congressperson to speak out against Goodlatte’s guestworker bill

Sadly, we need to let you know that Rep. Goodlatte’s guestworker bill passed the senate Judiciary committee 17-16. The bill creates a modern day Bracero program and would undermine the wages and working conditions of all agricultural workers. The legislation would allow employers to pay farm workers less than the minimum wage - and to replace any farm worker not willing to work for $8.34/hour or their state minimum wage. It will next move on to the full house. Take action to fight back by e-mailing your Congressmember today.

This bill passed despite passionate arguments by Democrats who pointed out again and again how the new guestworker program would effectively pull down the wages for American workers.

"This is setting up a permanent second class of persons in the United States."
-- Rep. Hank Johnson, D-GA 

"Make no mistake, this is a bill that allows employers to bring in millions of new guestworkers...Without real wage and labor protections, or even the minimal protections found in other temporary worker programs, U.S. workers would almost certainly be disadvantaged and displaced."
-- Rep. John Conyers, D-MI 

"Why we would want to bring in hundreds of thousands of foreign workers to displace American workers is beyond me."
-- Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-CA  

"What this bill seeks to do is to drive out American workers who are earning more than is required in this bill."
-- Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-WA 

Help the United Farm Workers and a broad coalition of almost 150 groups oppose this bill. Instead of taking agriculture back to the 1940’s, join us in asking Congress to refocus on the one thing that could stabilize agriculture quickly -- providing farm workers already laboring in the US with a path to lawful permanent residency and eventual citizenship by supporting the Agricultural Worker Program Act of 2017. The bill, authored by Senator Feinstein and Representative Gutierrez, would provide undocumented agricultural workers with legal immigration status and an eventual path to citizenship. E-mail your Congressmember today!

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