The American Business Coalition Immigration Action group applauded the Senate introduction of the Affordable and Safe Food Act. The legislation would modernize the nation’s farm guest worker H-2A visa program by opening it up to more farmers.
“ABIC Action fully endorses this bill and is so grateful for the leadership of Senator Michael Bennet in introducing the legislation,” says ABIC executive director Rebecca Shi.
The bill would make visas available for year-round work in the dairy industry and other agricultural sectors, put a down payment on border security with mandatory e-verify, stabilize wages for farmers, and create legal protections and a pathway to citizenship for undocumented decade-plus farm workers.
Senator Bennet says the cost of farm labor has gone up almost 50 percent over the past decade, much higher than wage costs in other sectors of the economy. The bill would save farmers $23 billion over the next 12 years.