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Senate may be warming up to the Farm Workforce Modernization Act

Source: Wikimedia Commons

The push is continuing to convince enough Senators that the Farm Workforce Modernization Act needs to be passed. The passage of this bill will provide certainty for both the farm owners and workers when it comes to battling inflation.

U.S. Representative Dan Newhouse says he feels like Senators are starting to come around after the bill was passed for the second time in the House.

“I think I can best say at this point, we have been making a lot of progress with the Senate. A lot of important work has been happening between Senators and House members and the staff of offices in both the Senate and the House. A lot of ideas are being exchanged, and paperwork being exchanged, so a lot of conversation is happening, and I’m very encouraged by that.”

Newhouse mentions that today’s labor challenges are not lost on the Senate.

“I think I’ve said before that there is a growing number of Senators that understand the critical nature of this problem and why agriculture needs a legal workforce.”

Newhouse says the need is becoming more and more clear. But what will be done with it?

“We’re labor-short to begin with and legal labor is very short, so we need reforms in the H-2A program. So, I’m very encouraged by what I see as progress.”

This bill would establish a program for workers to earn legal status, more flexibility for employers, critical protections for workers, and an E-Verify system for all ag employment. Newhouse’s goal is that we will see this turn into law before the end of this term.

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