Fairness for farmworkers has been long overdue
It is time for all New Yorkers to think about the food they eat and the nutritional produce that they and their families too often take for granted.
The farmworkers who tend and harvest these crops have long suffered and toiled without fundamental protections, protections that most of us take for granted. Their plight is so bad that it was seen as a huge success when not long ago farms were required to provide clean drinking water and sanitary facilities for workers. Think about that – clean water and port-a-potties were a colossal advancement.
If enacted, the Farmworker Fair Labor Practices Act will provide the most basic rights to overtime pay, a day of rest and collective bargaining.
As New Yorkers, we should not have to write about this issue. The New York State Senate needs to step up to the plate to represent the human rights of this vital workforce who provide food for all New Yorkers in every community. The time is now for passage of the Farmworker Fair Labor Practices Act.
Richard Lipsitz Jr., President
WNY Area Labor Federation, AFL-CIO