WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) joined in introducing the Farm Workforce Modernization Act, major bipartisan legislation to fix the labor problems that growers and dairies in Washington state face. McMorris Rodgers joined 20 Republican and 24 Democrat members, led by Rep Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) and Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA), in introducing this bipartisan compromise to address this pressing problem facing the agriculture industry.
“Agriculture is Eastern Washington’s number one industry, and whenever I meet with fruit and vegetable growers or dairies in Eastern Washington, the number one concern I hear is about labor. We need an agriculture workforce program that is workable, affordable, and able to meet our labor needs in the Northwest. This legislation institutes mandatory E-Verify for the agriculture sector to ensure workers are in the United States legally, addresses challenges the current workforce is facing, and makes significant reforms to the H-2A program to simplify the program, reduce bureaucracy, and bring down costs,” said McMorris Rodgers. “At the end of the day, in order to find a much-needed solution on this issue, we need to lead on a bipartisan bill. I’ve long said the American people expect more from us than partisan bickering, and this is an example of how bipartisan leaders can work together, find common ground, and advance legislation that will make a real difference for our farmers and agriculture workers alike.”
NOTE: The Farm Workforce Modernization Act is widely supported by the agriculture community, including support from nearly 250 agriculture organizations in the Pacific Northwest and across the country. It is also supported by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. You can read their letter of support by clicking here.
Read a summary of the bill by clicking here.
Read the full bill text by clicking here.
# # #