Approximately two million men, women and children labor in our fields, orchards, nurseries, feedlots and dairies and are essential to our $200+ billion agricultural industry. An estimated 70 percent of hired farm workers are undocumented immigrants. The U.S. agricultural system has always depended on the oppression of predominantly foreign born peoples for cheap labor. From slavery to the abusive Bracero program launched during WW II and its vestiges today in the guestworker program, farm work is too often a story of exploitation.
The people who do farm work are often treated as commodities, like machines in the field. With courage, grace and perseverance, farm workers are striving to turn this system around and are organizing to demand the dignity they and their labor deserve. We invite you to use the resources in this section to hear from farm workers themselves, gain a more in-depth understanding of the issues they face and meet our farm worker partner organizations.
(Our gratitude to Damon Williams, Summer 2018 Duke Divinity School intern, for his invaluable help with the Farm Worker section.)