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What Is The AG and Legal Workforce Act?

Thank you to Katie Frazier, Director of External Affairs for Farm Credit of the Virginias for writing this week's blog!  You can reach Katie via email at KFrazier@FCVirginias.com.


If you ask a farmer, “What do you think about your future labor needs on your farm?” chances are, you’ll get an earful about the availability of reliable farm workers to help them milk their cows, harvest their fruit or vegetables, or work their crops. Agricultural labor reform has been at the forefront of legislative policy for most agriculture groups for the past 20 years, with little to no movement on solutions to the problem by Congress. This summer, a bi-partisan group of legislators, led by Congressman Bob Goodlatte (6th Congressional District-Virginia), introduced the AG and Legal Workforce Act. The bill now has over 100 congressional supporters, and may be considered by Congress this fall.

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The AG and Legal Workforce Act replaces H-2A agricultural guestworker program with a new agricultural guestworker program, known as the H-2C program, to provide farmers and ranchers a reliable workforce. The H-2C program is available to both seasonal and year-round agricultural employers, provides a visa allocation to ensure labor needs are met, provides flexibility to minimize disruptions in farm operations, minimizes some regulatory burdens, and contains accountability and enforcement provisions. It also requires all U.S. employers to use E-Verify, and contains a gradual phase-in for employers—starting with the largest employers first and eventually phasing in small businesses and agricultural employers.
 
To learn more about the AG and Legal Workforce Act, visit https://judiciary.house.gov/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/SAFA-Ag-provisions-summary.pdf for a summary from the House Judiciary Committee.
 
 
Monday, September 17, 2018
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