Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Thursday, September 15, 2011

California's Farmworker Protection Laws Aren't Being Enforced

Posted By on Thu, Sep 15, 2011 at 8:38 AM

click to enlarge Not pictured: heat stroke.
  • Not pictured: heat stroke.

Yesterday, the LA Times ran a great piece checking up on how strongly the state was enforcing six-year-old regulations requiring farms to provide shade, water, and rest periods for their workers so they don't die of heat exposure. The answer: not well.

While many farms do erect moveable shade canopies, not surprisingly, many farm workers don't know of their rights, and cash-strapped agencies aren't investigating reports of abuses within the quick timeframe required to catch offenders.

Earlier this week, Ruth Reichl told Inside Scoop that she thinks the next big food issue will be "social justice for [farm] workers." But this isn't necessarily a social-justice issue. Laborers like the ones who furtively talked to the Times reporter may fear for their jobs if they complain, but with illegal immigration from Mexico plummeting, many states are hurting for farm workers. If farms don't protect the workers they have, they might some day find themselves without enough workers to protect.

Follow us on Twitter: @sfoodie, and like us on Facebook.
Follow me at @JonKauffman.

  • Pin It

Tags: , , ,

About The Author

Jonathan Kauffman


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"