Fairness for Farm Workers Act of 2019

Farmworker Justice Strongly Supports the “Fairness for Farm Workers Act of 2019” on Overtime Pay and the Minimum Wage

Farmworker Justice applauds Senator Harris and Representative Grijalva for their leadership in the introduction of the “Fairness for Farm Workers Act of 2019.” The bill would end the discriminatory denial of overtime pay and most remaining minimum wage exemptions for farmworkers.

As stated by Farmworker Justice President Bruce Goldstein, “We are pleased to support Sen. Harris’s and Rep. Grijalva’s Fairness for Farm Workers Act, which would right a historical wrong by ensuring farmworkers have equal rights to minimum wage and overtime protections. It is long past time for farmworkers to receive basic and fair compensation for the difficult and dangerous work that they do, for long hours, day in and day out, to feed our country. National legislation is necessary. Right now, amidst state-level efforts to increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour, some legislatures have discriminatorily denied farmworkers the improvements that would apply to other workers. Congress should pass legislation to finally grant farmworkers equal labor protections in recognition of their essential and valuable role in our economic and food security.”

Eighty years after the passage of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), farmworkers should not still suffer exclusion from many of the basic workplace protections that other Americans take for granted. Yet, the FLSA still denies farmworkers time-and-a-half pay after 40 hours per week.  Even though most farmworkers were added to the minimum wage in 1966, it is inapplicable to certain agricultural employers. The Fairness for Farm Workers Act would remedy the discriminatory denial of overtime pay and the minimum wage to farmworkers under the FLSA and would put farmworkers on the same footing as most other workers.

Farmworker Justice is a national advocacy organization based in Washington, D.C. that empowers farmworkers to improve their living and working conditions.

February 7, 2019, www.farmworkerjustice.org

Contact: Adrienne DerVartanian, [email protected] or Bruce Goldstein, [email protected]