News4 WIVB-TV: Agriculture community fights to ensure fairness for farmworkers and rights to unionize
Visit News4 WIVB online to watch the story. *** Leaders in the agriculture community say…
The Business Council of New York State, National Federation of Independent Business, and Upstate United sent a joint letter to Governor Hochul on August 29 urging her support of Senate Bill S.9509.
This bill would repeal the act Section 674-a of the Farm Laborer Fair Labor Practices Act, which would abolish the Farm Laborers Wage Board.
Click here to read the letter.
Statement from the Grow NY Farms Coalition: “New York State depends on the viability of our agriculture sector. Everyone needs to eat, and farms employ tens of thousands of well-trained people who help get food on our tables. Farmers and farmworkers work with and support so many local businesses, many raise their families here, and they invest back into their communities. All the research, surveys, and data have shown us that if an overtime threshold is lowered below 60 hours in New York State, our farmworkers will leave, our family-owned businesses will suffer, and our communities will end up trucking in food from even farther distances to stock grocery store shelves. Yet a Wage Board, that’s stacked against agriculture, continues to ignore logic, and defy reason.
We fully support Senate Bill S.9509, and farmers and farmworkers across New York appreciate the support of the state’s business community. We also urge the Department of Labor and Governor to hold off on any decisions relating to overtime until after the United States Department of Agriculture releases its 2022 Census of Agriculture in 2024, which will provide additional data that will inform decisions around this important issue.”
To date, more than 150 organizations representing New York’s agriculture industry, including the New York Apple Association, New York Association of Agricultural Educators, New York Farm Bureau, New York State Vegetable Growers Association, Northeast Agribusiness and Feed Alliance, Northeast Dairy Producers Association, and other family farms and ag-related businesses, have joined the Grow NY Farms Coalition. Visit www.GrowNYFarms.com to learn why family farms and farmworkers are working to educate New York leaders and communities on the need to keep overtime at 60 hours.