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New York Farm Bureau Supports Governor Hochul's Call to Expedite Work Visas for Migrant Farm Workers
New York Ag Connection - 05/25/2023

The New York Farm Bureau has expressed its support for Governor Kathy Hochul's request to the federal government, urging the expedited issuance of work visas for migrants who have undergone proper processing and wish to work on farms in New York State. In response to the influx of migrants to New York City, Governor Hochul, alongside Mayor Eric Adams, appealed to President Joe Biden to utilize executive authority to streamline work permits for asylum seekers.

President of the New York Farm Bureau, David Fisher, emphasized the urgent need for immigration reform to address labor challenges that pose a significant threat to the state's food system. Fisher acknowledged the potential benefits of involving migrants in the valuable food industry and highlighted ongoing collaboration with the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, as well as Cornell's Agricultural Workforce Development program, to explore viable solutions.

While Fisher recognized the expedited work visas as a potential temporary measure, he underscored the importance of finding a comprehensive solution at the federal level, stating that a lack of robust border policies has contributed to the current situation. The New York Farm Bureau, an influential agricultural lobbying and trade organization, remains committed to advocating for immigration reform that safeguards the stability and sustainability of New York's food system.

The call to expedite work visas for migrant farm workers represents a crucial step in addressing labor shortages and ensuring the continued productivity of farms throughout the state. However, the broader issue of comprehensive immigration reform remains a pressing concern that necessitates the attention and action of policymakers in Washington, D.C. As New York's agricultural industry grapples with labor challenges, collaborative efforts between government agencies, educational institutions, and advocacy organizations will be pivotal in forging a viable path forward.

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