The Department of Labor is currently seeking public comments on proposed improvements to the H-2A visa program. Unfortunately, the H-2A, in its current form, is only suitable for seasonal and temporary immigrant workers needed for harvesting and peak planting of agricultural products. Without a federal visa program to allow for year-round labor, the dairy industry is constantly struggling to find workers who will milk their cows, tend to their animals and harvest their crops.
This newly proposed rule offers a unique opportunity for us to publicly respond and ensure our labor concerns become part of the public record.
Your Commentary is Crucial
The Department of Labor and the White House need to hear from YOU — the dairy farmer. Your commentary and insight is crucial and the only way to show how dire the situation is.
Your commentary should show:
- Domestic workers are part of your workforce. It must be clear you are not passing over Domestic workers in favor of foreign help.
- That you recruit your local labor openings through all local sources, however this process has not been fruitful. It is imperative we show that jobs necessary to run your operations and take care of your animals continue to go unfilled despite your best efforts to find local help.
Here’s what you need to do in two easy steps:
1.Submit your comments BEFORE Sept. 24
Provide your name, the name of your dairy operation, describe or provide information about your dairy operation and offer a short description on the lack of ability to find domestic workers to fill job openings. Your comments only need to be a few sentences or a paragraph. Make sure someone from your dairy operation is put in charge to get this done.
- To Submit Comments Electronically: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=WHD_FRDOC_0001-0070 and click the blue "Comment Now" box on the right of screen.
- To Mail Comments: Address written submissions to (including disk and CD-ROM submissions) to Adele Gagliardi, Administrator, Office of Policy Development and Research, Employment and Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue NW, Room N-5641, Washington, DC 20210.
2.Complete this survey:
This survey will help us to compile anonymous data on labor shortages and recruitment efforts of dairy producers.