Latest News

Below are our latest news on important news and events relating to policy changes and issues affecting farmworkers and their families.

January 17, 2019

For Immediate Release                Contact: Bruce Goldstein, Farmworker Justice

January 17, 2019                              202-293-5420 ext. 304

Statement of Farmworker Justice on the Introduction of The  Agricultural Worker program Act of 2019

Bill would stabilize farm labor force, provide protections for immigrant farmworkers

(washington, dc)   Farmworker Justice welcomes the introduction of the Agricultural Worker Program Act of 2019 and strongly supports its enactment. We thank Senator Feinstein, Representative Lofgren and other Members of Congress for their leadership in support of reasonable, workable and fair immigration reform and their attention to farmworkers.

This bill builds momentum toward comprehensive immigration reform while addressing the unique and urgent needs of agricultural and rural communities. Americans depend on farmworkers for abundant, safe, healthy, and affordable food. Yet, the status quo for farmworkers and agricultural employers is untenable.  

“With a large portion of agricultural workers in the U.S. lacking immigration status, and farmworker families living under the threat of arrest and deportation, Congress must reform our broken immigration system. The opportunity for legal immigration status is crucial to enabling farmworkers to live and work productively without fear and to seek improvements to their working and living conditions.  The Agricultural Worker Program Act would help ensure a stable, legal workforce in agriculture, which is good for farmworkers, employers, consumers and the national interest,” said Bruce Goldstein, President of Farmworker Justice.

The bill would establish an earned legalization program under which certain farmworkers who meet agricultural work requirements, national security clearance requirements, and other obligations are given temporary permission to work in agriculture for three to five years and the opportunity to earn immigration status with a path to citizenship.  Their immediate family members in the United States also would have an opportunity to convert their status.

The bill would not make any changes to the H-2A agricultural guestworker program.  The H-2A program, which allows an unlimited number of work visas each year, has modest but important protections against abuse of U.S. and foreign workers that should be strengthened and more effectively enforced. The Agricultural Worker Program Act would minimize the need for employers’ use of the H-2A guestworker program by providing a meaningful opportunity for immigration status for the hard-working undocumented farmworkers who put food on our table.    

Farmworker Justice is a national advocacy organization for farmworkers with over thirty-five years of experience serving the farmworker community regarding immigration and labor policy.

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For more information, contact

Bruce Goldstein, at 202-293-5420 ext. 304 or [email protected],

or Adrienne DerVartanian at [email protected].

November 07, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                 Contact:  Bruce Goldstein, President

November 7, 2018                            (202) 293-5420 [email protected]

David Damian Figueroa, respected non-profit leader, activist and entertainment professional, will oversee Farmworker Justice’s corporate and foundation partnerships, giving campaigns, special events, and branding initiatives.

Washington, D.C. – Farmworker Justice announced the appointment of David Damian Figueroa as Director of Development. Figueroa will be based in California’s Coachella Valley and will report to the national organization’s president, Bruce Goldstein. Figueroa will be charged with increasing partnerships with foundations, corporations, and philanthropists.  He will also be responsible for enhancing Farmworker Justice’s, individual donor base, organizational capacity, and raising the visibility of the organization’s policy advocacy, impact litigation, training and education programs, and corporate responsibility initiatives.

“We are very pleased we have this opportunity to take advantage of David Damian’s many skills and resourcefulness. He is an accomplished innovator in philanthropy, non-profit communications, branding, and content marketing. He comes to Farmworker Justice with a background as a farmworker and a wealth of valuable experience and we are excited to have him as part of our senior team,” stated Goldstein.

Prior to joining Farmworker Justice, Figueroa was the AVP of Branding, Content Marketing and Strategic Alliances at Frontier Communications.  He served at the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) from 1998 to 2001 and rejoined the organization as Vice President of Development and Strategic Communications from 2009 to 2015. Figueroa served as Associate State Director of the Los Angeles County Region for AARP California from 2002 to 2009 where he oversaw the implementation of social campaigns, community alliances, volunteer management and membership development. Figueroa also helped launch AARP’s Segunda Juventud bilingual magazine in Los Angeles.

“I’m excited and honored to have the opportunity to work for Farmworker Justice at such a critical time in our country.  In my youth, I spent most of my summers and many weekends working in the fields and orchards of southern Arizona. It is my intent to bring  the hardship of the farmworker to light and work with the team and key partners to identify and implement high-impact solutions that benefit our nation’s farmworkers,” said Figueroa.

For the past 26 years, Figueroa has served as a philanthropic advisor to numerous celebrities. He specializes in forging meaningful relationships with celebrities with non-profit organizations to heighten awareness for social impact campaigns.

Partnering with actors/activists Eva Longoria, Forest Whitaker, and author Eric Schlosser (Fast Food Nation), David Damian has brought greater focus to the farmworker issue, working as executive producer on the critically-acclaimed documentary Food Chains, which focused on the corporate food supply chain and the Coalition of Immokalee Workers Fair Food Campaign.  He was also was associate producer of The Harvest—The Children Who Feed America/La Cosecha—Los niños que alimentan America.

Prior to committing to service in the non-profit sector full-time, Figueroa achieved an influential role in the entertainment industry, fostering the success of clients including José José, El Show de Johnny Canales, Boyz II Men, Arista Latin, MCA Polygram, BMI Latin, Motown Latino, Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, Marc Anthony, and India for RMM/Universal.

Founded in 1981, Farmworker Justice is a nonprofit organization that seeks to empower farmworkers to improve their wages and working conditions, immigration status, health, occupational safety, and access to justice. For more information, please visit www.farmworkerjustice.org

July 26, 2018

The House Appropriations Committee today, in the spending bill for the Department of Homeland Security, inserted a fundamental, substantive policy change to the H-2A temporary foreign agricultural worker program. The amendment would expand the scope of the H-2A program to allow H-2A visas to be issued without regard to whether the jobs are temporary or seasonal.  Rep. Newhouse (R-WA) led this effort.