Fruit-packing workers strike, and Washington State strengthens Covid-19 protections

After several weeks of strikes by workers at six fruit-packing facilities in Yakima, Washington, and a number of outbreaks of Covid-19 in food production and processing plants, the state will require stronger protections for agricultural workers. The new protections, which Gov. Jay Inslee announced on May 28 and which take effect June 3, require agricultural employers to provide all workers with personal protective equipment at no cost, ensure physical distancing or barriers between workers when distancing is not possible, place hand-washing stations at regular intervals among workers, and implement sanitation and distancing on employer-provided transportation.(No paywall)

Advocates slam Trump order to keep meatpacking plants open

Environmentalists, labor groups, and animal rights advocates on Tuesday condemned President Trump's planned executive order to keep meatpacking plants open, despite reported outbreaks of Covid-19 at more than 60 of these plants across the country.

How climate change drives farmworker activism

From wildfires and drought to lost work days due to soaring temperatures, the changing climate is fast becoming another issue that farmworkers must contend with. One way they're doing that is by organizing, according to FERN's latest story, published with The Nation.(No paywall)

California state fair holds farmworker exhibit for the first time

For the first time in it’s 164-year history, the California state fair will includes a farmworker exhibit, celebrating the people who have keep the state’s $47-billion industry running. “The exhibit features the stories of pioneers who founded the United Farm Workers of America: Cesar Chavez, Dolores Huerta and Filipino union leader Larry Itliong,” along with information on modern-day labor laws like the one signed by Gov. Jerry Brown last year, guaranteeing overtime pay after an eight-hour workday for farmworkers, says Lake County News.