July 31, 2017  |  VIEW IN BROWSER

July Washington Newsline

A job is about more than just income.Work is a source of pride; it gives men and women the ability to provide for their families and make our local communities better places.

United States Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta

Inside AFOP

From the Desk of the Executive Director

By Daniel Sheehan, AFOP

After a late start caused by the delayed completion of the fiscal year 2017 spending process, congressional appropriators have begun moving fiscal year 2018 funding bills, including the Labor-HHS-Education measure that covers the National Farmworker Jobs Program (NFJP).  The House version of the bill would cut NFJP... [Read Full Post]

Healthy Pregnancy

By Vashti Kelly, AFOP Health & Safety

The last week in May AFOP’s Health & Safety Programs observes Healthy Pregnancy month dedicated to educating farm worker women and their families on the importance of protecting not only one’s self but their unborn child as well while working in the fields... [Read More]

DARI welcomes AFOP to its June 13-14 regional training conference in steamy Orlando, Florida

Delta Association for Rural Initiatives (DARI) welcomes AFOP to its June 13-14 regional training conference in steamy Orlando, Florida.  Richard Roe of Kentucky Farmworker Program captured the following photographs from this most worthwhile gathering:

CET Nets Seat on Local Workforce Board

Jaime Mata, CET, with White House counsellor Kellyanne Conway earlier this year in Washington, D.C.
Photo: Daniel Sheehan

Center for Employment Training (CET) Regional Director Jaime Mata has secured a seat on the Ventura County, California Workforce Development Board.  With an office in Oxnard, California, Jaime manages the CET operations in the County.  According to Patrick Newburn, Ventura Workforce Development Board administration manager, “The WDB Membership Committee has met and reviewed your application to be a member of the Workforce Development Board of Ventura County (WDB), and I am happy to report that the committee has decided to recommend your appointment to the WDB board for a three year term.  The committee is impressed with your experience and commitment to workforce issues through the Center for Employment Training, including your work with migrant seasonal farmworkers. Additionally your leadership on the AJCC Consortium is greatly valued in advancing the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act in our region.”  Congratulations, CET!  Congratulations, Jaime!

AFOP to Induct Six into Farmworker Advocate Hall of Fame at September 2017 National Conference

With the endorsement of the AFOP Executive Committee, the ad hoc AFOP Hall of Fame Committee earlier this month presented the following slate of individuals to the AFOP membership for induction into the AFOP Farmworker Advocate Hall of Fame this September at the 2017 AFOP national conference.  AFOP members reviewed the list and voted their unanimous approval.  The nominees are:

•         Luis Esparza (formerly MET)
•         Ernie Flores (formerly CVOC)
•         Arturo Lopez (Coalition of Florida Farmworker Organizations, formerly IMC)
•         Lupe Martinez (UMOS)
•         Franklin Montgomery (Posthumous; MET)
•         Velma Smith (Posthumous; PathStone)

The committee is already considering nominees for 2018, so, if you would like to suggest eligible individuals for future inductions, please contact AFOP Hall of Fame Committee Chairman Cynthia Thomas-Grant directly at the Illinois Migrant Council at (312) 663-1522 (Ext. 226) or by email at  You can also notify AFOP Executive Director Daniel Sheehan and he will forward the information on to the committee.  The AFOP Farmworker Advocate Hall of Fame selection criteria can be found [HERE].

More Inspiring NFJP Success Stories!

The Nathaniel Orr Story

By Jane Bacilio
Telamon-West Virginia

On May 6, 2017, Nathaniel will put on his cap and gown to walk the runway to his future. He will graduate from Shepherd University with a Regent of Bachelor of Art’s degree with an emphasis in... [Read More]
Luis F Sotomayor

Luis F. Sotomayor - Success Story

By PathStone-Puerto Rico Arecibo Office

“I will give 100% to accomplish my goals to obtain a better job and reach success,”
The words above are what Luis Sotomayor said to Pathstone-Puerto Rico staff, and he has made that statement come true. In May, we learned that Luis has been promoted to supervisor and now recruits for Valley Crest Landscape, where we refer many NFJP participants...  [Read Full Story]

AFOP Member UMOS Opens Florida Office

AFOP member organization UMOS hopes to provide year-round service to farm-workers migrating to Missouri and Wisconsin...[Read More]

PPEP and the New Labor Secretary

PPEP Arizona Executive Director Dr. John Arnold Speaks with United States Labor Secretary Alex Acosta

Dr. John Arnold, PPEP chairman, described his time recently with Secretary Acosta this way:

“I happened to be backstage when Labor Secretary Acosta was about to speak to the LULAC convention. I talked with him about NFJP, work experience, and on-the-job training. After hearing his speech, I believe him to be a very genuine and caring individual and understanding of importance of training programs, especially in the areas of apprenticeships.  His speech was very elegant, well received, and he appeared to be committed to his job.  He comes from the ranks of those who had to struggle in life.” 

National Skills Coalition News

AFOP is a proud member of the National Skills Coalition and applauds the excellent work it performs in behalf of America’s workers.  Please see below important news recently posted by the Coalition.

House Subcommittee Proposes Steep Cuts to Workforce, Education

By Kermit Kaleba 07/13

Yesterday, the House Appropriations Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (Labor-HHS) Subcommittee released its draft of the Fiscal Year 2018 (FY 2018) Labor-Health and Human Services-Education appropriations bill... [Read More]

Bipartisan Bill to Support Infrastructure Workforce  

By Katie Spiker 07/20

On July 20, Senators Tim Kaine (D-VA) and Rob Portman (R-OH) introduced bipartisan legislation, the Building U.S. Infrastructure by Leveraging Demands for Skills (BUILDS) Act, that would support grants to industry...[Read More]

Congressional Dems Highlight Skills Training as Part of “Better Deal”

By Kermit Kaleba 07/24
Congressional Democrats today released details of a new messaging campaign in advance of the 2018 elections that will highlights tax incentives for employer-based training while also boosting federal investments in apprenticeship and public-private partnerships...[Read More]

Senators Introduce Dream Act; Includes Middle-Skill Pathway

By Amanda Bergson-Shilcock 07/20

Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) today introduced the Dream Act of 2017. The bill would provide a path to legal immigration status and eventual U.S. citizenship for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children and meet eligibility requirements...[Read More]

More News

Farmworker Justice: Farmworkers, under Attack in Congress, Must Fight Back

By 07/21

This week, farmworkers faced attacks on several fronts in the House of Representatives. On Wednesday, July 19th, the House Judiciary Committee’s subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security held a hearing entitled: “Agricultural Guestworkers: Meeting the Growing Needs of American Agriculture.” The witnesses included U.S. Rep. David Valadao (R-CA), two agricultural employers – Sarah Frey (CEO of Frey Farms) and Jon Wyss (owner of Gebbers Farms) - and Giev Kashkooli of the United Farm Workers (UFW). For those of you who don’t know, the majority...[Read More]

Taking Giant Leaps Forward: Experiences of a Range of DACA Beneficiaries at the 5-Year Mark

By Roberto G. Gonzales, Marco A. Murillo, Cristina Lacomba, Kristina Brant, Martha C. Franco, Jaein Lee, and Deepa S. Vasudevan with the Center for American Progress

On June 15, 2012, then-President Barack Obama introduced Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)—a policy that temporarily defers deportations and provides renewable two-year work permits for up to an estimated 1.9 million eligible unauthorized young adults. Now, five years later, nearly 790,000 eligible youth have been approved for DACA.In the past five years, DACA beneficiaries have experienced immediate benefits and improved their outlooks...[Read More]

Upskilling Guide for Employers

by UpSkill America & Jaime S. Fall 06/1

UpSkill America released the “UpSkilling Playbook for Employers,” designed to be a tool for employers interested in investing in economic opportunities for frontline and entry-level workers, while at the same time improving business outcomes. "We hope the playbook will inform a national conversation on sustainable jobs, expanding opportunity, and the role that employers can and do play," said UpSkill America Director Jaime Fall...[Read More]

Judge Overturns Utah's 'Ag-Gag' Ban on Undercover Filming at Farms

By Bill Chappell, NPR

A federal judge has ruled Utah's ban on secretly filming farm and slaughterhouse operations is unconstitutional, striking down what critics call an "ag-gag" law that Utah enacted in 2012...[Read More]

What We’re Reading

Could a 7-Year-Old Have Picked the Food You’re Eating?  The Law Says No. Workers Say Yes.

Jacqueline Castillo was 7 when she started picking tobacco in Wayne County, about 55 miles southeast of Raleigh...[Read More]

Credentials Offer a Path to the Middle Class

By Kathy Byron

Today, there are literally hundreds of these specialized credentials, certifications, and licensures. What they have in common is specialized training that meet the needs of specific occupations. These “middle skills” jobs require more than a high school education, but less than a college degree...[Read More]

Milked: Immigrant Dairy Farmworkers in New York State

By Workers’ Center of Central New York

A new study, released in June at the start of National Dairy Month, Milked: Immigrant Dairy Farmworkers in New York State, finds that a race to the bottom is occurring in the treatment and working conditions of the immigrant laborers who toil in milking parlors and barns...[Read More]

Immigrant Workers Leave WI Dairy Farms for Fear of President Trump

By Alexandra Hall

In the driveway of a two-story house on a dairy farm in western Wisconsin, five men focus on a unique construction project. Using a drill, hammer and nails, plywood and rope, they work together in the afternoon sun to... [Read More]

Three-fifths of Cuts in Trump's Budget Come from Programs for Low- and Moderate-Income People

by Isaac Shapiro  Richard Kogan Chloe Cho

A new analysis from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities found that roughly three-fifths of the $4.3 trillion of non-defense cuts in President Trump's proposed FY18 budget come from programs assisting low- and moderate-income people. These programs account for just 29 percent of non-defense spending and just 24 percent of total program spending. Yet President Trump's budget would get 59 percent of its cuts from them.  [Read More]

CBPP: Contrary to President’s Rhetoric, His Budget Undercuts Workforce Development

By Isaac Shapiro

President Trump is expected to argue this week that he prioritizes workforce development but, as we’ve detailed here and here, his budget consistently and substantially cuts a range of training and education programs aimed... [Read More]

What We're Watching

AFOP Health & Safety in the News

Migrant workers in Hastings, Nebraska learn about dangers with pesticide and heat exposure with the help of AFOP Health & Safety and Proteus-Nebraska... [Check it out]
Film: “Broken for Good”: Why Charities are Poor
An ironic take advanced by the National Association of Non-Profit Organizations & Executives (NANOE) on how difficult it is for non-profits to operate in a for-profit world.  According to NANOE, Broken for Good takes the general public on a wild ride into the upside down world of nonprofit management. Hailed as both provocative and uplifting BFG uses an “emperor has no clothes” approach to confront the “crazy-making” that’s paralyzed the charitable sector for the past fifty years. Relying on vivid story-telling BROKEN FOR GOOD “challenges the existing order of things” inspiring society to solve global problems by first transforming the nonprofits in whom they invest. Watch the film trailer here.

Documentary Film Reveals Why Charities Are BROKEN FOR GOOD

The AFOP Washington Newsline (ISSN# 1056-8565) is produced by the Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs (AFOP), a national federation of agencies serving migrant and seasonal farmworkers. AFOP’s mission is to improve the quality of life for migrant and seasonal farmworkers and their families by providing advocacy for the member organizations that serve them.

The publication is funded by subscriptions and the members of AFOP. The Washington Newsline receives no financial support from the federal government. Staff may be reached by calling (202) 384-1754.
Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs

1120 20th Street, N.W. |  Suite 300 South
Washington, D.C. 20036

Phone: (202) 384-1754

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