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October 2002, Volume 8, Number 4

RURAL AMERICA

California: Housing, Budget
The income-housing gap is widening in California, as housing prices climb faster than earnings. The National Low Income Housing Coalition released a

Midwest: Poultry, Population
Poultry firms require workers to be dressed in protective gear when the production line starts running, but in the past they did not pay workers for

Rural Welfare Reform
The US Department of Agriculture considers 535 of the 2,276 nonmetro counties to have persistent rural poverty, which is defined as nonmetro counties

Blacks: Migration, USDA
One of the world's "Great Migrations" occurred in the US between 1920 and 1970, when southern Blacks left in large numbers. Until the Civil War and

FARM WORKERS

UFW: Mandatory Mediation, ALRB Cases
The UFW, calling binding arbitration "the most important farm labor bill since 1975… [to] finally fulfill the promise of the original 1975

UFW: 40 Year Anniversary
The UFW held its 16th Constitutional Convention in Fresno in September 2002, marking the fortieth anniversary of its founding in 1962 in the city of

California: FLCs, Workers' Comp
California employers must retain copies of the licenses of the Farm Labor Contractors who bring workers to their farms for three years, and they must

Midwest: Corn, DeCoster
Most of those detasseling corn are teens, who walk along half-mile long rows of corn that each have 3,000 to 4,000 plants; most detasselers cover 15

Northeast: Maine H-2B Tragedy
In the Allagash Wilderness Waterway, a remote part of Maine, 14 Honduran and Guatemalan workers died in September 2002 when the van driven by their

Southeast: Oranges, Tobacco
Florida orange harvesting may be mechanized. Hand harvesters pick an average 10 90-pound field boxes or 900 pounds of oranges an hour, at a cost of

Northwest
Mattawa, Washington on the Columbia River has temporarily banned new tax-free housing projects because they increase demand for municipal services

 
IMMIGRATION

Unauthorization and RICO Suits
In March 2000, a class-action suit was filed on behalf of several legal immigrant workers by Hagens Berman LLP in Yakima, Washington under the

Legalization for Mexican Workers
A great deal has changed in the past year. On September 5, 2001, President Bush said: "the United States has no more important relationship in the

H-2A, Braceros
In Arriaga v. Florida Pacific Farms, the US 11th Circuit Court of Appeals held that, under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), employers requesting

OTHER

How We Eat; Food-Sector Jobs
About 2.5 million individuals do farm work for wages sometime during a typical year, so that farm workers represent less than two percent of the 140

California Ag: FVH, Water
California farm sales were $29.8 billion in 2001. A $32 million "California Grown" advertising campaign was launched in August 2002 to urge

OECD: Ag Subsidies
The OECD released its fifteenth annual report on farm subsidies in June 2002, and reported that farmers in the world's richest 30 countries received

Fishing, Grazing
The government largely regulates two types of agriculture, fishing and grazing on federally owned lands in the western states. In both cases, there

Europe: Food, Migrates
European food producers want to protect the names of their products, such as Parmesan cheese and Parma ham. Regional producers of specialty food

Global Communities: Bananas, Coffee
Almost half of the world's three billion workers are farmers or farm workers, and many are leaving agriculture for cities in the developing world.

RESOURCES

California Agriculture: Data
>California has 100 million acres of land, and 28 percent are used for agriculture, but only 10 million acres are used to grow crops- the rest is

Organizing Immigrants
Milkman, Ruth. Ed. 2000. Organizing Immigrants: The Challenge for Unions in Contemporary California. Cornell University Press. This nine-chapter