Agricultural labor shortage is a serious concern for America’s farmers and ranchers, and immigration reform is needed to provide a legal way for immigrants to continue working, American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) President Bob Stallman said in a statement Tuesday.
“Immigrant laborers play a vital role in tending our crops and livestock, and we are encouraged by the bipartisan reform efforts,” Stallman said. “American agriculture needs a legal and stable workforce, and farmers from across our nation are ready to support a solution that reaches that conclusion.”
Stallman’s comments follow a bipartisan immigration reform proposal submitted by eight senators this week.
“The American Farm Bureau Federation is encouraged by the immigration reform principles put forth by a bipartisan group of eight senators. We are especially pleased the senators recognized that agricultural labor provisions must be part of any substantive effort to reform immigration policy,” Stallman continued. “We are hopeful that this will provide the needed framework to move forward during the 113th Congress with a legislative solution for America’s agricultural labor shortage.”
AFBF supports an agriculture worker visa program to allow experienced laborers the opportunity to earn citizenship while providing an important service to American agriculture.