Biden endorses California farmworker bill, Newsom demurs
President Biden has endorsed California’s Agricultural Labor Relations Voting Choice Act (AB 2183) but the office of California Gov. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, signaled he would not support it in its current form.
In a Sept. 4 statement, Biden said, “I strongly support California’s Agricultural Labor Relations Voting Choice Act (AB 2183), which will give California’s agricultural workers greater opportunity to organize and collectively bargain for better wages, benefits, and working conditions. Farmworkers worked tirelessly and at great personal risk to keep food on America’s tables during the pandemic. In the state with the largest population of farmworkers, the least we owe them is an easier path to make a free and fair choice to organize a union. I am grateful to California’s elected officials and union leaders for leading the way.”
The United Farm Workers has endorsed the bill and organized a 24-day march from Delano to Sacramento to convince Newsom to sign it.
Supporters say the bill would give farmworkers more opportunities to vote in union elections, and Newsom said he still hopes a compromise can be reached, The Fresno Bee reported.
Sens. Angus King, I-Maine, Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, Tina Smith, D-Minn., and Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, have introduced a bill to double USDA’s Market Access Program (MAP) and Foreign Market Development (FMD) Program funding.
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