Farm Worker Issues
Agricultural work is hard work. In order to feed the country, an estimated 2-3 million farm workers labor in the fields across the United States, including handpicking the vast majority of fruit and vegetable crops produced here.
In many cases these workers are young adults or even children; in all cases, farm workers are excluded from important national labor protections that other workers possess. The role of farm workers is one of the most vital jobs, and yet it’s also one of the most dangerous and least adequately compensated.
For their demanding physical labor, farm workers earn, on average, between $12,500 to $14,999 a year for individuals and $17,500 to $19,999 for a family. Furthermore, farm workers are some of the oppressed workers in the U.S. Their jobs can subject them to health problems resulting from pesticide exposure, deplorable housing conditions, workplace abuse, and a series of other issues. This is the great paradox of our food system: the very people who work to feed the U.S. struggle to feed their own families.
In a movement to turn this system around, farm workers are organizing to demand a seat at the table with the people and institutions that have the ability to change their inhumane working and living conditions. NFWM stands with these farm workers, and we invite you to use the resources in this section of the site to gain a more in-depth understanding of the issues farm workers face. We hope you will join the movement for dignity and respect for farm workers!