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October 2003, Volume 9, Number 4

RURAL AMERICA

California San Joaquin Valley: Jobs, Air, Politics
The Fresno Bee on September 7, 2003 ran a series of articles on the "jobs crisis" in the San Joaquin Valley. Fresno and Tulare counties, the two

Meat, Poultry, Tobacco
Iowa gained more population from California than from any other state during 1990s: 18,287 people moved to Iowa from California, while 12,194 left

FARM WORKERS

California: Mediation
The Pacific Legal Foundation sued the Agricultural Labor Relations Board, alleging that mandatory mediation is unconstitutional. A judge ruled

California: UI, Workers Comp, Health
Unemployment Insurance. California paid $5.4 billion in UI benefits to jobless workers in 2002, up sharply from $3.4 billion in 2001. Rising

UFW: Contracts, Politics, Wages
Contracts. The UFW in summer 2003 reportedly renegotiated contracts covering 1,200 citrus workers in eastern Riverside county with Desert Citrus

Northwest
The state of Washington estimated there were an average 27,000 seasonal farm workers employed on state farms in 2002--seasonal workers were defined

Florida: Oranges, Housing; Texas
The Miami Herald ran a series of articles entitled "Fields of Pain" beginning on August 31, 2003, charging that Black recruiters were targeting

New York, Midwest
New York's Democratic-led Assembly approved a bill in 2003 that would grant farm workers several benefits, ranging from overtime pay to the right

Data, Mobility, Census
NASS. USDA reported that there were 1.3 million hired workers employed on US farms the week of July 6-12, 2003, including 75 percent directly hired

 
IMMIGRATION

AgJOBS: Round 2
The Agricultural Job Opportunity, Benefits, and Security Act of 2003 (S 1645 and HR 3142), co-sponsored by US Senators Edward Kennedy, (D-Mass) and

H-2A, H-2B, Braceros
DHS reported that 15,600 H-2A workers were admitted in FY02, down sharply from 27,700 in FY01, while the number of H-2B worker admissions jumped to

Immigration Enforcement
Austin "Jack" DeCoster, one of Iowa's largest egg producers, pleaded guilty in August 2003 to federal immigration violations and agreed to pay a

Canada, Europe
The Ontario Canada government does not allow agricultural workers to join a union and bargain collectively. Despite this prohibition, the Ontario

OTHER

California: FVH Agriculture
The value of farm commodities was $31 billion in 2002, including $3.4 billion in Fresno county; $3.2 billion in Tulare county; and $2.8 billion in

Wine Woes
California has too many wine grapes, and many growers were scrambling to find buyers in September 2003. Mesa Vineyard Management, managing 6,000

California: Water Transfers
The Imperial Irrigation District agreed on a 3-2 vote in October 2003 to sell some of the Colorado river water to which it is entitled and

ILO: Global Farm Worker Issues
About 40 percent of the world's three-billion strong labor force, some 1.2 billion workers, are employed in agriculture as self-employed farmers,

Europe: Brazil, Aquaculture
The United States and the European Union agreed in August 2003, ahead of the next round of World Trade Organization negotiations, on ways to reduce

RESOURCES

Promise Unfulfilled
Jerry Brown, who was California's governor between 1975 and 1983, said "The greatest accomplishment of my administration was the enactment of a

Farm Labor in the 1930s
During the 1930s, some 1.3 million Americans from the Midwest and southwest migrated to California, which had a population of 5.7 million in 1930s.