Mexico trade mission and Ag labor issues – Looking Forward

Broccoli

While in Mexico City last week, Governor Brown met with Secretary Navarrete Prida of the Mexican Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare and signed a letter of intent to address labor rights issues for temporary Mexican workers in California – a matter of high importance, of course, for California’s farmers and ranchers. Moving forward from that promising development, we are working to create a pilot program than connects at least one California agricultural employer with Mexican officials to establish a set of protocols. Our objective is to help curb migrant worker abuse on a national and international basis, and provide stronger assurances to California agricultural employers that migrant labor employed within a H-2A program are not subject to illegal fees, misrepresentation of employment terms, fraud and other issues.

California, the U.S. Department of Labor, and a network of cross border nongovernmental organizations would work with Mexico to establish a bi-nationally available register of certified labor recruitment agencies. In addition, Mexico would develop a system for monitoring, verifying and supervising the activities carried out by recruitment agencies. In California, the state would identify agricultural employers that voluntarily commit to using certified recruiters.

In the absence of a national immigration solution, This pilot program can be a great benefit to California’s agricultural community and strengthen our bi-lateral ties with Mexico.

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2 Responses to Mexico trade mission and Ag labor issues – Looking Forward

  1. Don Curlee says:

    When discussing farm labor availability and farm worker protections don’t overlook the 800-pound elephant in the room — the shameful and corrupt actions of the Agricultural Labor Relations Board and its overbearing General Counsel. The refusal to count the ballots of workers at Gerawan Farms in Reedley, cast in an election last November which was called for by Gerawan’s nearly 5,000 workers to decide if the United Farmworkers union should be decertified as their bargaining agent borders on criminal. The governor’s failure to insist on the provisions and protections for farm workers’ rights as outlined in the Agricultural Labor Relations Act(ALRA) is an embarrassment. From the Mexican point of view California’s attitude toward Mexican farm workers must appear to be a state-endorsed joke.

  2. john miller says:

    I think this is exceptionally good government.
    USDOL and Obama Administration have not helped Ag at all.
    The program has become unworkable, expensive, complicated.
    PLEASE move forward with this idea.

What do you think?