Freedom Folks

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Labor Shortages Or Desirous Of Serfs?

Source: ilw

From a report to congress...
Trends in the agricultural labor market generally do not suggest the existence of a nationwide shortage of domestically available farmworkers, in part because the government’s databases cover authorized and unauthorized employment. (This finding does not preclude the possibility of spot labor shortages, however.) Farm employment did not show the same upward trend of total U.S. employment during the 1990s expansion. The length of time hired farmworkers are employed has changed little or decreased over the years. Their unemployment rate has varied little and remains well above the U.S. average, and underemployment among farmworkers also remains substantial. These agricultural employees earn about 50 cents for every dollar paid to other employees in the private sector. This report will be updated as warranted.
now compare that with this...
CLOVIS, Calif. -- Bins of Granny Smith apples towered over two conveyor belts at P-R Farms' packing plant. But only one belt moved. P-R Farms, like farms up and down California and across the nation, does not have enough workers to process its fruit.

"We're short by 50 to 75 people," said Pat Ricchiuti, 59, the third-generation owner of P-R Farms. "For the last three weeks, we're running at 50 percent capacity. We saw this coming a couple years ago, but last year and this year has really been terrible."

Farmers of all types of specialty crops, from almonds to roses, have seen the immigrant labor supply they depend on dry up over the past year. Increased border security and competition from other industries are driving migrant laborers out of the fields, farmers say.
Or this...
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Aggressive enforcement of U.S. immigration laws is hurting farmers in New York state, who stand to lose $195 million over the next 2 years unless Congress creates "reasonable and effective farm worker programs," agricultural lenders said on Wednesday.

The Farm Credit Associations of New York said dairy, fruit and vegetable production in the state suffered due to raids seeking illegal workers. It was the first estimate of losses since Congress deadlocked on immigration reform this year.

"In some cases, farmers have been unable to harvest or market crops as a result of these disruptions," the lenders said in a statement supporting immigration-law reform.
So who's lying?

H/T Lonewacko

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