- On December 18, 2019
On December 11, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Farm Workforce Modernization Act. Supported by ASTA, the legislation takes a two-pronged approach to solving the labor crisis in American agriculture. It establishes a program for agricultural workers in the United States to earn legal status through continued employment in the agriculture sector. It also reforms the existing H-2A program to provide flexibility for employers and allows agricultural sectors with year-round employment needs to access the program.
Upon enaction of the bill and after a phase-in period, it would additionally establish an E-Verify program for agricultural workers. A full one-pager on the bill can be found here. A Senate companion bill is expected to be introduced in the first quarter of next year.
ASTA is a member of the Agricultural Workforce Coalition, which will be working with Congress to move the legislation through the Senate in 2020.