Agricultural Labor: From H-2A to a Workable Agricultural Guestworker Program, Hearing Before the Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security of the Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, One Hundred Thirteenth Congress, First Session, February 26, 2013 [open pdf - 2MB]
This is the February 26, 2013 hearing on "Agricultural Labor: From H-2A to a Workable Agricultural Guestworker Program," held before the U.S. House Committee on Judiciary, Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security. From the opening statement of Trey Gowdy: "Farming is more than just a means of securing a safe, reliable food source. Farming is more than just living in harmony with land and withstanding the vagaries of nature. Farming is a way of life. It is a culture, a uniquely American culture in many regards. We would do well to place ourselves in the shoes of farmers because we sometimes lose track of what it takes for growers to actually put this bounty on the world's tables. We lose track of what it takes for them to give us the safest, most efficient, most reliable agricultural system in the world. For those crops that are labor-intensive, especially at harvest time, hard labor is critical. One grower might need only one or two hired workers to help plant, tend and harvest several hundred acres of wheat. However, another might need hundreds of seasonal workers to harvest hundreds of acres of fruits or vegetables, and a dairy or a food processor might need hundreds of workers year round. It is universally agreed that at least half of our seasonal agricultural labor supply is made up of workers without legal residency status. This figure is probably much more than half, and could comprise upwards of 1 million unauthorized workers. As Congress considers yet again immigration reform, we must decide whether and under what circumstances and conditions growers can continue to rely on these workers. We all seek a future without reliance on unauthorized workers. But to accomplish that, we need a guestworker program to provide growers with the labor they need, indeed all of us need." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: Trey Gowdy, John Conyers, Jr., Bob Goodlatte, Zoe Lofgren, Bob Stallman, Chalmers R. Car, III, Mike Brown, and Giev Kashkooli.
Serial No. 113-3
Government Printing Office: http://www.gpo.gov/