Sending Office: Grijalva, Raul M.
DEADLINE FOR ORIGINALS: JANUARY 30TH AT 12 PM
Farm workers play a critical role in our economy, ensuring that our constituents have safe, quality food on their tables. They work long, hard hours in one of the most hazardous industries in this country and are exposed to an incredibly physically demanding
career. Many of these workers are mothers who work from sun-up to sun-down to make ends meet.
When the 1938 Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) established federal standards for minimum wage and overtime pay, it exempted agricultural workers from these protections. This agricultural exclusion was rooted in racism and political expediency. The sponsors
of the New Deal era labor legislation mustered enough votes for passage by appeasing southern legislators who opposed coverage for agricultural and domestic workers. While the FLSA has afforded most farm workers some minimum wage protections since 1966, to
this day, most agricultural employees do not have to be paid overtime for working more than 40 hours a week. Farm workers are the only workers throughout the food chain that are denied these basic protections.
I am introducing the Fairness for Farm Workers Act, which will remedy the discriminatory denial of overtime pay and the minimum wage to farm workers under the FLSA. The legislation will eliminate existing exemptions for agricultural employers
from overtime pay and will eliminate most of the remaining exemptions to the minimum wage for agricultural employers. However, the bill will maintain the family farm exemption to these requirements.
Please join me in cosponsoring the Fairness for Farm Workers Act to ensure that the men and women who harvest the food for our constituents’ tables receive the wages they have earned and need. This bill will improve the lives of farm workers
and their families, create equity in our food system and benefit farming communities as the increased wages are spent in local businesses. For more information, please contact Norma Salazar in my office at 5-2435/ Norma.Salazar@mail.house.gov.
Raúl M. Grijalva
Member of Congress
e-Dear Colleague version 2.0