In response to the introduction of the Seasonal Worker Solidarity Act, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka issued the following statement:
America’s unions celebrate the introduction of the Seasonal Worker Solidarity Act and thank Rep. Joaquin Castro for his leadership in drafting it. This timely new bill advances the simple notion that seasonal jobs should be safe, good jobs, where everyone is treated fairly. The pandemic has exposed the systemic undervaluing of work now understood to be essential and increased recognition of the need for enforceable worker protections. Our current abusive model of guest-worker programs has made workers into disposable commodities in the global economy, which is why unions have long called for these programs to be restructured. This bill rejects entrenched patterns of discrimination by reining in corporate power and promoting opportunity and equal rights for all workers in seasonal industries.
The Solidarity Act pioneers a new framework for work visas that responds to real labor market needs, lifts workplace standards, and prevents discrimination and displacement. The bill will end captive employment in the H-2B program, respect family unity, expand access to justice and afford migrant workers a well-earned path to citizenship. In this time of health and economic crisis, we must work together to fix what is broken, rather than expand failed models. This bold new approach will help spur a just recovery by putting workers first, and we look forward to helping enact these reforms into law.
Contact: Gonzalo Salvador, 202-637-5018