WASHINGTON (KSEE) – With 260 votes in favor, legislation designed to improve ag workers’ rights and help them earn legal status in the country passed the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday.
The Farm Workforce Modernization Act also promises to reform the H2-A (temporary agricultural workers) program to provide more flexibility to employers and establish a nationwide mandatory E-Verify system for ag employment.
Critics fear the bill would provide amnesty for thousands of ag workers, but the bipartisan bill received bipartisan support Wednesday.
In a statement following the vote, the California Fresh Fruit Association applauded the support from lawmakers and said the bill will address labor concerns.
“H.R. 5038 demonstrates that bipartisanship still exists, that when faced with a common challenge we can still rise to the occasion and do the right thing,” said CFFA President Ian LeMay.