UFW's Arturo Rodriguez: House GOP bill would slash farm worker pay & revive ‘bracero’ program abuses
Same day Senate panel weighs farm worker amendments to bipartisan 'gang of eight' immigration reform
United Farm Workers President Arturo S. Rodriguez will testify at 10 a.m. EST Thursday before a House judiciary subcommittee that a Republican-backed farm worker guest worker bill "bears much closer resemblance to the horrific [1942-1964] bracero guest worker program than it does to the immigration changes" needed in the 21st Century.
Meanwhile, also on Thursday the Senate Judiciary Committee considers amendments to the bill known as the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013 (S. 744). The committee is expected to vote on amendments impacting the agricultural provisions of the comprehensive immigration reform measure that were negotiated earlier this year by the UFW and the nation's major grower associations.
Rodriguez will testify before the subcommittee against HR 1773, by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.). The UFW president will detail how the House GOP bill would slash pay for both American and foreign farm workers; deprive U.S. farm workers of jobs by minimizing the obligation of employers to first recruit domestic workers before seeking foreign field laborers; abandon decades of other agricultural labor law protections for domestic and foreign farm workers established by both political parties in response to the terrible abuses of the bracero program from the 1940s to the '60s; and fail to provide a path to either legal status or citizenship for the 1 million undocumented farm workers in the country now who would remain here while hundreds of thousands of additional foreign agricultural workers are brought in.