Events in California, Georgia, Washington and Michigan urging Congress pass a pathway to citizenship
During Memorial congressional recess, the UFW Foundation and the United Farm Workers rallied with hundreds of farm workers in four major agricultural states urging Congress pass a path to citizenship for farm workers this year. The seven events took place throughout California, Georgia, Washington, and Michigan, and included rallies, human billboard events, informational sessions, and letter drop-offs at Senate offices.
Congress can protect farm workers from deportation and family separation with a simple majority vote via the reconciliation process, and by the U.S. Senate passing the Farm Workforce Modernization Act (FWMA) of 2021. The legislation passed on a bipartisan vote by the U.S. House of Representatives on March 18. If signed into law, FWMA would allow undocumented field workers to apply for legal status while continuing to work in agriculture. The bill is the product of months of tough negotiations between the United Farm Workers, UFW Foundation, Farmworker Justice, the nation’s major grower associations, and lawmakers from both parties. It passed the House with 30 Republican votes, winning the most bipartisan support of any immigration proposal in years.
“We need legalization," said Claudia Duran, a farm worker from Michigan. "It would help us go out without fear of being arrested for not having a driver's license. It would help us take our children to games, school activities, medical appointments. I would be able to visit my parents who I haven’t seen for 17 years. We’ve worked hard for many years. It is time for legalization."
Impacted farm workers are available for interviews. Event photos and videos are also available upon request.
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