A national coalition of 64 organizations representing specialty crop producers sent a letter to Congressional leadership this week on safety protocols within the industry during COVID-19. They want Congress to know the steps agricultural employers are taking to protect their workers.
“Farmers and ranchers across the country moved quickly to implement new employee safety protocols early in the crisis,” says National Council of Agricultural Employers President Michael Marsh. “While America was being placed on lockdown, agricultural employers were already at work trying to figure out how to best protect their employees and the public.”
The letter details the collaboration between the agriculture industry, public health experts, and regulatory officials to develop the best safety practices in the field and packing. As future rounds of COVID-19 pandemic legislation is debated, the coalition is asking congressional leaders to acknowledge the widespread employee protection protocols that are already in place, as well as provide additional support to help agricultural employers continue to meet the needs of their employees.
The Western Growers Association, a member of the coalition, is asking Congress to “extend current relief efforts for agriculture, and to include additional funding for personal protective equipment and other measures to offset the costs of maintaining an essential workforce during COVID-19.”
(From the National Association of Farm Broadcasters)