As Chairman of the Board of Agri-Mark, one of the Northeast's most prominent dairy farm cooperatives, and as a dairy farmer from Washington County, I am very proud to say that my Congresswoman, Elise Stefanik, has chosen to sign on as a co-sponsor and vote in favor of the Farm Workforce Modernization Act that was recently passed in the House of Representatives. This is a step in the right direction toward helping thousands of farmers and farmworkers in New York state.
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Dairy farmers in upstate New York have needed an immigration fix for years. This legislation specifically includes our dairy workers in the H-2A program, a program they currently do not have access to. This bill also makes it easier and more efficient for farmworkers to obtain legal status to work in agriculture after years of proven and consistent employment in agriculture. These people work to feed our country, and this bill is what they need.
Having access to a reliable workforce is important to the dairy industry here in New York state and throughout the region. With local help impossible or very difficult to find, it is crucial to have these people available to fill the needs of dairy producers across the northeast.
Congresswoman Stefanik has done right by her dairy farmers and her district by choosing to sign onto this bill. We are proud to have her take this initiative and be involved in the process of bringing a comprehensive ag labor fix back home to the district. Her decision to help move this forward will have a positive impact on our farms, employees and food supply for decades to come.
Neal Rea, dairy farmer, Cambridge
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