House Democrats today introduced a comprehensive immigration reform bill that builds upon the bipartisan bill that already passed the Senate. While the bill is not perfect, PAN senior scientist Margaret Reeves, PhD, applauds the effort as a step in the right direction:
Immigration is a critically important issue for farmworkers, for farmers and for everyone who lives and eats in the U.S. We need comprehensive immigration reform now, and the introduction of a bill in the House is an important step in the right direction. A roadmap to citizenship, combined with strong labor protections for farmworkers, would benefit all of us.
Our food system depends on at least one million undocumented workers employed on U.S. farms and ranches — often working in hazardous, physically demanding conditions, and lacking in basic protection and rights. Undocumented farmworkers live in fear of reporting on-the-job abuses — including pesticide poisonings — due to the threat of deportation. This is untenable. It’s time to better support agricultural workers and create a path to citizenship.”
For immediate release: October 2, 2013 Contact: Paul Towers, 916-216-1082, firstname.lastname@example.org