VOLUME 9 - 2016-2017 - ISSUE 2
9 Ky. J. Equine, Agric. & Nat. Resources L. 297 (2017).
DEFICIENCIES IN THE AGRICULTURAL LABOR MARKET
Note Written By: Rafael Rodriguez
This Note will examine the H-2 visa program by exploring its historical evolution from the old Bracero program to the modern influx of immigrant workers. Section II of this note will address the weaknesses of the H-2 Visa Program and its contribution to the deficiencies in the labor market by visiting immigration problems that persist to this day. Furthermore, Section II will address how the H-2A program is detrimental to the citizen workforce of the United States and how the H-2A program was adopted in its modern version.
Section III of this note will analyze the responsibilities of the employers who bring the H-2A workers from other countries. Their responsibilities will be scrutinized in a way that uncovers the damaging effects the H-2A program has on the workforce of the United States. Moreover, the approval procedure for immigrant workers will be visited so that there is better understanding of what and how the immigrant workers receive their work “placement.” In addition, the protections that are afforded to the immigrant workers that come along with their approval notice will be discussed so that initial protections afforded to immigrant workers are not overlooked. In turn, this will reiterate that while workers have minimal workforce protections, they nevertheless have at least some workforce protections.
Section IV will argue that the Fair Labor Standards Act, which is applicable to United States citizens, should apply to guest workers who come from overseas. The section will compare the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FSLA”) and the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (“AWPA”) and discuss differences and applications between the two and argue why the FLSA should apply over the AWPA. In addition, undocumented immigrant workers will be discussed as their effect on the labor market and economy dominates modern political discussion. Finally, Section V will conclude with a discussion about the weaknesses of the H-2 program and how some problems might be solved.