On January 28 Senator Karen Keiser, Chair of the Senate Labor Committee held a hearing on SB5172 which would end the lawsuits and protect farmers agains the demands for three years back pay.
Over 550 farmers, farm workers and supporters asked to speak. Their message: without action on this bill, our farms will die and our jobs will be lost.
Union leaders and labor lawyers spoke against protecting farms. Now, they are demanding that farmworkers be paid overtime even during the seasonal harvest time. Farmers can't afford to pay overtime so more workers must go home after 40 hours. It means large pay cuts. Life will get harder, not easier for farmworkers.