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美國農業工人為疫情期“關鍵”工種,但未獲得足夠保護

美國農業工人為疫情期“關鍵”工種,但未獲得足夠保護

Mónica Ramírez, Meena Harris 2020年04月08日
政府必須馬上出臺保護農業工人的有效措施金龙彩票|官网登录,至少應該為他們提供口罩和手套等防護裝備。

2020年4月1日,佛羅里達市,農業工人正在采摘綠皮西葫蘆。許多農業工人根本無法執行社交隔離。攝影師:JOE RAEDLE —— 蓋蒂圖片社

如今金龙彩票|官网登录,從日出到日落農業工人們依舊在辛勤勞作:種植金龙彩票|官网登录、采摘、包裝農產品,以供應人們的一日三餐。

美國正在努力拉低COVID-19確診病例增長曲線。隨著疫情愈演愈烈,食品雜貨店被一搶而空。當各州紛紛公布隔離措施時,特朗普政府宣布金龙彩票|官网登录金龙彩票|官网登录,食品和農業工人屬于“關鍵”工作者之一,建議他們繼續工作金龙彩票|官网登录。

在此之前,聯邦政府事實上從未將農業工人視為“關鍵工作者”,也沒有給予他們同其他工種相同的權利和保護措施。1938年《公平勞動標準法案》和1935年《國家勞工關系法案》等勞動法中,都有對其他大部分工作者的權利保護,比如加班補償權利或加入工會的權利金龙彩票|官网登录,但農業工人卻被排除在外。

然而《流動性和季節性農業工人保護法》為農業工人提供了更多法律保障,如規定了住房標準和工資水平,并要求雇主保留記錄等。此外,加州等多個州也通過州級法律為農業工人提供了額外保護,如加班補償權利和加入工會的權利等。但在聯邦法律下,始終沒有為農業工人的這些權利提供保障。

直到此次全球疫情爆發,美國聯邦政府才承認農業工人對于美國經濟的重要性金龙彩票|官网登录。當美國國會考慮通過立法解決此次史無前例的健康危機時,也不能對農業工人視而不見。

新冠疫情帶來的威脅,使農業工人的處境變得更糟糕金龙彩票|官网登录,因為他們沒有辦法采取一些基本的必要措施來保護自己金龙彩票|官网登录。農業工人仍要繼續整天在田中勞作,許多人的保護措施也只是在臉上蒙一塊大方巾。2010年研究發現,農田里的洗手設施通常不配備肥皂。

農業工人們根本無法做到社交隔離金龙彩票|官网登录。美國《2018年全國農業工人普查》顯示,2015年和2016年,19%的農業工人屬于流動性工人。這就意味著,他們會按照農作物成熟的時間流動作業。近四分之一的受訪者表示,他們乘坐貨車或公共汽車集體外出打工金龙彩票|官网登录,因為要靠承包商或者工頭為其安排出行金龙彩票|官网登录。調查還發現,45%的流動工人和44%的無證勞工都居住在擁擠環境中。

美國《全國農業工人普查》顯示金龙彩票|官网登录,農業工人是美國最貧困的群體之一金龙彩票|官网登录,平均時薪只有10.60美元。目前金龙彩票|官网登录,農業工人在多數州內無法享受帶薪病假或失業保險,這意味著農業工人一旦生病,他們將無法依靠財務保障網維持家用。雖然《家庭第一冠狀病毒應變法案》可能讓部分農業工人有機會享受到帶薪病假金龙彩票|官网登录,但許多人仍會被排除在外,尤其是該法案可能使許多雇傭人數在50人以下的小雇主得到豁免金龙彩票|官网登录。此外金龙彩票|官网登录,在雇傭工人超過500人的大型農場中,農業工人也無法享受到該法案規定的帶薪病假金龙彩票|官网登录,所以最終只有這兩種情況之外的農業工人才可能享受這項福利。

美國政府必須馬上出臺保護農業工人的有效措施。至少應該為他們提供口罩和手套等防護裝備金龙彩票|官网登录。根據疾病預防與控制中心提出的防止COVID-19傳播的衛生建議,農場尤其是衛生間和沐浴設施中還應提供肥皂和水。

目前,大多數美國人都無法接受病毒檢測,即便是表現出輕度或中度癥狀金龙彩票|官网登录。因此,對于農業工人可以根據癥狀表現要求他們進行隔離,以避免其他工人感染。這要求雇主為需要隔離的工人提供單獨住所。密切接觸者也要有單獨的居住空間進行自我隔離,并且雇主必須保證這些工人不會因感染或自我隔離而面臨失業的風險。

聯邦政府最新出臺的冠狀病毒救濟法案中,許多條款并沒有涉及到一些移民。COVID-19病毒檢測的成本過高,那些本身就很難獲得醫療保障的無證低收入農場工人更是難以承受。因此,聯邦政府必須確保為所有工人提供免費檢測,以確定他們是否感染了新型冠狀病毒以及是否需要接受醫療護理等,而不應該考慮他們的移民身份。畢竟,COVID-19不會對不同身份的移民區別對待。

農業工人是美國食品產業鏈的核心金龙彩票|官网登录。政治領袖和雇主們必須采取恰當的措施為他們提供保護。因為一旦農業工人患病,你能想象會給整個國家的糧食供應帶來怎樣的后果嗎?

本文作者莫妮卡·拉姆雷斯是“女性移民正義”組織的創始人兼總裁金龙彩票|官网登录。

米娜·哈里斯是“非凡女性行動運動”的創始人兼CEO。

她們共同創立了“非凡農業工人倡議”,旨在為農業工人疫情救濟基金募捐。(財富中文網)

譯者:BIZ

如今,從日出到日落農業工人們依舊在辛勤勞作:種植、采摘金龙彩票|官网登录、包裝農產品金龙彩票|官网登录,以供應人們的一日三餐。

美國正在努力拉低COVID-19確診病例增長曲線。隨著疫情愈演愈烈,食品雜貨店被一搶而空金龙彩票|官网登录。當各州紛紛公布隔離措施時,特朗普政府宣布,食品和農業工人屬于“關鍵”工作者之一,建議他們繼續工作。

在此之前,聯邦政府事實上從未將農業工人視為“關鍵工作者”,也沒有給予他們同其他工種相同的權利和保護措施。1938年《公平勞動標準法案》和1935年《國家勞工關系法案》等勞動法中,都有對其他大部分工作者的權利保護,比如加班補償權利或加入工會的權利,但農業工人卻被排除在外。

然而《流動性和季節性農業工人保護法》為農業工人提供了更多法律保障金龙彩票|官网登录,如規定了住房標準和工資水平金龙彩票|官网登录,并要求雇主保留記錄等。此外,加州等多個州也通過州級法律為農業工人提供了額外保護,如加班補償權利和加入工會的權利等金龙彩票|官网登录。但在聯邦法律下,始終沒有為農業工人的這些權利提供保障。

直到此次全球疫情爆發,美國聯邦政府才承認農業工人對于美國經濟的重要性。當美國國會考慮通過立法解決此次史無前例的健康危機時,也不能對農業工人視而不見。

新冠疫情帶來的威脅,使農業工人的處境變得更糟糕,因為他們沒有辦法采取一些基本的必要措施來保護自己。農業工人仍要繼續整天在田中勞作,許多人的保護措施也只是在臉上蒙一塊大方巾金龙彩票|官网登录金龙彩票|官网登录。2010年研究發現金龙彩票|官网登录,農田里的洗手設施通常不配備肥皂。

農業工人們根本無法做到社交隔離金龙彩票|官网登录。美國《2018年全國農業工人普查》顯示金龙彩票|官网登录,2015年和2016年,19%的農業工人屬于流動性工人。這就意味著,他們會按照農作物成熟的時間流動作業。近四分之一的受訪者表示,他們乘坐貨車或公共汽車集體外出打工,因為要靠承包商或者工頭為其安排出行金龙彩票|官网登录。調查還發現,45%的流動工人和44%的無證勞工都居住在擁擠環境中。

美國《全國農業工人普查》顯示,農業工人是美國最貧困的群體之一,平均時薪只有10.60美元。目前,農業工人在多數州內無法享受帶薪病假或失業保險,這意味著農業工人一旦生病金龙彩票|官网登录,他們將無法依靠財務保障網維持家用。雖然《家庭第一冠狀病毒應變法案》可能讓部分農業工人有機會享受到帶薪病假金龙彩票|官网登录,但許多人仍會被排除在外金龙彩票|官网登录,尤其是該法案可能使許多雇傭人數在50人以下的小雇主得到豁免。此外,在雇傭工人超過500人的大型農場中金龙彩票|官网登录,農業工人也無法享受到該法案規定的帶薪病假,所以最終只有這兩種情況之外的農業工人才可能享受這項福利。

美國政府必須馬上出臺保護農業工人的有效措施。至少應該為他們提供口罩和手套等防護裝備。根據疾病預防與控制中心提出的防止COVID-19傳播的衛生建議,農場尤其是衛生間和沐浴設施中還應提供肥皂和水。

目前,大多數美國人都無法接受病毒檢測,即便是表現出輕度或中度癥狀。因此,對于農業工人可以根據癥狀表現要求他們進行隔離金龙彩票|官网登录,以避免其他工人感染。這要求雇主為需要隔離的工人提供單獨住所。密切接觸者也要有單獨的居住空間進行自我隔離,并且雇主必須保證這些工人不會因感染或自我隔離而面臨失業的風險。

聯邦政府最新出臺的冠狀病毒救濟法案中,許多條款并沒有涉及到一些移民金龙彩票|官网登录。COVID-19病毒檢測的成本過高,那些本身就很難獲得醫療保障的無證低收入農場工人更是難以承受。因此,聯邦政府必須確保為所有工人提供免費檢測,以確定他們是否感染了新型冠狀病毒以及是否需要接受醫療護理等,而不應該考慮他們的移民身份金龙彩票|官网登录。畢竟,COVID-19不會對不同身份的移民區別對待。

農業工人是美國食品產業鏈的核心金龙彩票|官网登录金龙彩票|官网登录。政治領袖和雇主們必須采取恰當的措施為他們提供保護金龙彩票|官网登录。因為一旦農業工人患病,你能想象會給整個國家的糧食供應帶來怎樣的后果嗎金龙彩票|官网登录?

本文作者莫妮卡·拉姆雷斯是“女性移民正義”組織的創始人兼總裁。

米娜·哈里斯是“非凡女性行動運動”的創始人兼CEO。

她們共同創立了“非凡農業工人倡議”金龙彩票|官网登录,旨在為農業工人疫情救濟基金募捐金龙彩票|官网登录。(財富中文網)

譯者:BIZ

Right now, farmworkers are still toiling from sunup to sundown to plant, pick, and pack the produce we eat.

As the U.S. scrambles to flatten the COVID-19 curve, grocery store shelves have been emptied, and the Trump administration has declared food and agricultural workers as one of the “essential” groups of workers who are advised to continue working, as states across the country have announced shelter-in-place orders.

The federal government, prior to this recent advisory, hasn’t actually treated farmworkers like the essential workers they are—deserving of the same rights and protections as others. In fact, farmworkers were excluded from the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 and the National Labor Relations Act of 1935, labor laws that provide most other workers with protections (like the right to overtime or to unionize).

While the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act provided more protections for farmworkers by regulating housing standards, requiring paychecks, and establishing requirements for employer record-keeping, and while some states such as California have provided additional protections under state law like the right to overtime and the right to unionize, farmworkers are still not guaranteed those rights under federal law.

It took a global pandemic for the federal government to acknowledge that farmworkers are critical to the U.S. economy. And as Congress considers legislation to address this unprecedented crisis, farmworkers must not be left behind.

The threat posed by COVID-19 is exacerbated for farmworkers because they’re unable to take the basic steps necessary to protect themselves. As farmworkers continue to labor in fields all day long, many are shielded only by bandannasto protect their faces. And a 2010 study found that soap is often not available in hand-washing facilities in the fields.

Social distancing is also not a viable option for farmworkers. According to the 2018 National Agricultural Workers Survey (NAWS), which covers 2015 to 2016, 19% of U.S. farmworkers were migrants, meaning that they follow the crops from location to location for work. Nearly a quarter of those interviewed said they travel in large groups, in vans or buses, to get from job to job because they are dependent on contractors or crew leaders to transport them. The survey also found that 45% of migrant workers and 44% of undocumented workers lived in crowded housing.

Farmworkers are also among some of the most impoverished workers in the U.S., having earned an average of $10.60 an hour, according to the NAWS. Farmworkers are currently not eligible for paid sick leave or unemployment insurance in most states, which leaves most farmworkers without a financial safety net to support their families when they fall ill. While the Families First Coronavirus Response Act might grant the possibility of paid sick leave for some farmworkers, many would be excluded from that, particularly given that small employers (those who employ less than 50 people) may be exempted from these new provisions. And yet, farmworkers who are employed by larger farms with more than 500 workers would also be excluded from the paid-leave provisions—making this benefit accessible only to those who fall between the two brackets.

Meaningful measures to protect farmworkers must be taken now. At the very least, farmworkers need to be provided face masks and gloves as a precautionary measure. They also need soap and water in the fields, not to mention in their bathrooms and bathing facilities, to meet the hygiene recommendations outlined by the CDC to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Given that most people around the country are currently not able to access tests, even if they exhibit mild to moderate symptoms, a farmworker could be symptomatic and require isolation in order to avoid getting other workers sick. This would require employers to provide separate housing for these workers so that they can be isolated from others. Those who have been exposed to ill workers should also receive housing where they can self-quarantine—and employers should guarantee that their job is not at risk owing to illness or self-quarantine.

Many provisions of the recent federal coronavirus relief bill do not extend to certain immigrants. Paying for a COVID-19 test could be cost prohibitive, especially for low-paid undocumented farmworkers who already face difficulties in accessing health care. Therefore, the federal government must also ensure that all workers, regardless of their immigration status, are afforded free testing to determine whether they have COVID-19, as well as the medical care that they need. After all, COVID-19 doesn’t discriminate based on immigration status.

Farmworkers are at the heart of the U.S. food chain. Political leaders and employers must take the appropriate measures to protect farmworkers. Because if farmworkers fall sick, what happens to our food supply in the process?

Mónica Ramírez is founder and president of Justice for Migrant Women.

Meena Harris is founder and CEO of the Phenomenal Woman Action Campaign.

They are cofounders of the Phenomenal Farmworkers Initiative, which was launched to drive donors to the Farmworkers’ Pandemic Relief Fund.

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