Human rights strategist Greg Asbed gets ‘genius’ grant

The MacArthur Foundation awarded one of its $625,000 "genius grants" to Greg Asbed, one of three co-founders of the Coalition for Immokalee Workers (CIW). It said Asbed "is a human rights strategist developing a new model — worker-driven social responsibility — for improving conditions for low-wage workers within the 21st Century labor market."

House companion is filed to Senate ‘blue card’ for farm workers

Thirty members of the U.S. House of Representatives—all Democrats—introduced a bill to give legal status to undocumented immigrants working in U.S. agriculture and to their families as well.

Trump budget asks for $1.5 billion to begin border wall this year

President Trump proposed $1.5 billion to begin construction this year of a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico — a signature promise of his campaign — ramping up to $2.6 billion in the fiscal year that opens on Oct. 1. The wall would be a concrete part of Trump’s policy of strict enforcement of immigration laws, which could drain the farm labor pool because many farm workers are believed to be undocumented.

While ordering a wall, Trump says U.S. will ‘repatriate illegal aliens swiftly’

Fulfilling a signature promise of his campaign, President Donald Trump signed an executive order to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border and "to repatriate illegal aliens swiftly, consistently and humanely." More than one-half of farm workers are believed to be undocumented; the largest U.S. farm group said lawmakers might be more willing to discuss immigration reform if border security is strengthened.

Immigrant dairy workers are economic spark in rural Kansas

When Kansas dairy farmers expanded their herds and couldn't recruit enough local labor, they began recruiting immigrants from Central America as long-term employees with effects that are altering rural society and economics, according to Kansas State University researchers. Associate sociology professor Alisa Garni says immigrant labor and economic development have gone hand in hand.

Ebola brings hunger to far more people than it kills

The outbreak of Ebola infections in western Africa is disrupting food production so that hundreds of thousands of people will face hunger in coming months, says The Atlantic.

Immigration reform important for Midwest agriculture-Report

One of five farms in the Midwest relies on hired labor, says a report from the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. "Midwest agriculture currently employs 57,000 immigrant workers across a variety of sectors, including crop production, dairy and...

Obama order affects 250,000 farm workers, maybe lots more

President Barack Obama's executive order on immigration will affect indirectly at least 250,000 and perhaps as many as 500,000 farm workers, says Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

Congress may move on immigration early in new session

The incoming chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee says lawmakers could set to work on immigration reforms early in the session of Congress that opens on Jan 6. Sen Chuck Grassley says his counterpart in the House, Rep Bob Goodlatte told him "the House will act early." Grassley reiterated his preference for the the House to move first because it stalled immigration legislation in 2013 and this year.