UFW Statement on Veto of AB 2386
La PAZ--The following is a statement issued by UFW President Arturo Rodriguez following the veto of AB 2386, secret ballot election reform, by Gov. Schwarzenegger.
"We are disappointed with the Governor's veto of our Secret Ballot Elections Reform for farm workers, but regrettably not surprised.
When he vetoed the farm worker bill last year which had the same end goal of giving farm workers the tools to enforce the laws the state cannot enforce, the Governor proudly claimed he was stepping up enforcement. Yet during this same period, the state was ignoring the fine it imposed on the employer who killed Maria Isabel Vasquez Jimenez and also failed to perform follow-up inspections of the employer.
The Governor says he can enforce the laws.But his words of commitment ring hollow. The empty promise now echoes in the void left by those workers who died. Workers who died a tragic and needless death all because the Governor gave his word that he could and would enforce the law.
His so-called commitment to the farm workers is one that has been left to rot in a field of apathy where only the interests of agricultural employers are reaped.
This summer, in response to Maria Isabel Vasquez Jimenez’s death the Governor bragged that enforcement was at its highest level-- yet the lives of five more farm workers were lost following Maria Isabel’s tragic death.
At the same time the Governor was claiming to take enforcement seriously he was focusing on his own political agenda by accepting political contributions from agricultural employers.
Gov. Schwarzenegger’s disrespect toward Latinos is no different than that of Pete Wilson.
We were extremely disappointed with his dismissal of MALDEF's legal arguments that Proposition 11 would violate the voting rights of all Latinos. The Governor’s veto of secret ballot elections for farm workers is consistent with his disregard for Latinos.
We will continue our struggle to protect our people's voting rights.
We also know that had it not been for the Governor's fundraising agenda, or had we been a rich organization the Governor may have been willing to sign a bill for farm workers."
Click to read: Statement of Assembly Speaker Emeritus Fabian Nunez on Veto of AB 2386, Secret Ballot for Farmworkers Bill