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Farm Labor & Rural Migration News Blogs

Mexico: 7th largest auto producer, 4th largest exporter

January 16, 2020

Mexico’s auto industry expanded rapidly after the 1994 implementation of NAFTA. Mexico was the world’s seventh largest producer of autos and light trucks in 2019, producing over four million vehicles, and the fourth largest exporter, exporting over 80 percent of them.

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US apprehensions in FT19 approach 1 million, double FY14 levels

January 16, 2020

CBP agents apprehended 977,500 foreigners just inside the US border with Mexico in FY19, including 126,999 foreigners who were found to be inadmissible at ports of entry. The peak month for apprehensions and inadmissibles was May 2019, wham there were 145,000. Apprehensions and inadmissibles in FY20 are about 25 percent lower than in the same months of FY19, and involve two-thirds single adults.

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Mexico: leading producer and exporter of avocados

January 16, 2020

Mexico produces 2.2 million metric tons of avocados a year; most are harvested between October and February. Michoacán has over 70 percent of Mexico’s 235,000 hectares of avocados, and yields average 11 metric tons per hectare. Most avocado farms have five to 10 hectares of trees.

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AEWRs for 2020 average $14 an hour

January 16, 2020

The H-2A program allows farm employers to request certification from DOL to recruit and employ foreign workers to fill seasonal farm jobs, defined as jobs lasting 10 months or less except for sheepherders, who are allowed to remain in the US three years.

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IOM: 272 million international migrants in 2019

January 16, 2020

The UN estimated that there were 272 million international migrants in 2019, including two thirds who are migrant workers. The number of international migrants has tripled since 1970. The migrant share of the world’s population rose from 2.3 percent to 3.5 percent over the past half century.

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House Approves HR 5038, the Farm Workforce Modernization Act

December 20, 2019

The House approved HR 5038, the Farm Workforce Modernization Act (FWMA), by a vote of 260-165 in December 2019 to legalize currently unauthorized farm workers, streamline the H-2A program, and require farm employers to use E-Verify to check newly hired workers. Almost all Democrats supported the FWMA, while three fourths of Republicans opposed the bill.

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Canada’s Seasonal Workers Program (SAWP)

December 20, 2019

The Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program (SAWP) has been admitting Caribbean workers since 1966 and Mexican workers since 1974 to fill jobs on Canadian farms when Canadian workers are not available. Procedures to recruit workers and to protect them while they are employed abroad are spelled out in government-to-government MOUs and employer-worker contracts.

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USDA’s Farm Labor Survey

December 20, 2019

USDA’s Farm Labor Survey surveys farmers twice a year to obtain estimates of employment and average hourly earnings for workers who are hired directly by farm operators. Data are collected for the week that includes the 12th of the month, and reported for 15 multistate regions and three states, California, Florida, and Hawaii. Data for January and April are collected in April, and data for July and October are collected in October.

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UFW and FLOC: Income and Members

December 20, 2019

There are two major US farm worker unions, the UFW in California and the Farm Labor Organizing Committee in Ohio and North Carolina. The UFW reported 7,481 members in 2018 who could vote, and 1,213 retired members and 371 agency payers who could not vote on union issues. The UFW reported about 5,000 members to DOL until 2013, 10,000 in 2013, and less than 8,000 in recent years.

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US admitted a third of the 5 million temporary workers in 20 OECD countries in 2017

December 20, 2019

The OECD reported that almost five million temporary foreign workers entered 20 OECD countries in 2017, including a third who entered the US. The OECD counts foreigners who have the right to work in the host country, but not the right to settle. However, some temporary migrant workers “earn” settlement rights, as when their employers sponsor them for immigrant visas.

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