Labor Center Releases New Report on Farmworkers in New York
The UMass Labor Center has published a new report featuring data on wage theft, workplace injuries, hours worked, and employee demographics among farmworkers in New York. The report is based on data collected from the largest pool of migrant, seasonal, and year-round farmworkers ever to participate in a single survey, with 530 responses over more than 100 farms.
"Historically, farmworker voices have been absent from the public discussion of New York farmworker policy," notes the authors of the paper. "The state's farmworkers are generally not citizens – they are undocumented and guest workers – so they have good reason to hesitate before speaking up about problems related to their workplaces, particularly if their housing is tied to their jobs. Many farmworkers fear that their employer may retaliate against them by cutting their hours, firing them, illegally evicting them, or calling immigration authorities."