Rural Migrant Workers And Agricultural Workers

1170 Words5 Pages
Introduction The production of agricultural products in the United States is dependent on the hand labor provided by migrant agricultural workers. However, this population is at higher risk for certain chronic illnesses that must be monitored frequently. With most of them working long hours, English illiterate and living in a poor socioeconomic status, access to preventive health care services becomes very challenging. Different solutions to tackle this challenge have been proposed, including mobile clinics as well as clinics devoted to providing medical care to this population. Both still face significant barriers in delivering health care services to agricultural migrant workers (AMWs). Building upon an idea proposed at the Finding…show more content…
Migrant Clinicians Network, a non-profit organization working on strengthening the infrastructure for health care facilities serving farmworkers and mobile populations, defines migrant farmworker as: “an individual who is required to be absent from a permanent place of residence for the purpose of seeking employment in agricultural work”. In both cases the definitions implies mobility and job instability (high turnover?). The term Migrant and Seasonal Farmworkers (MSFWs) is used by the DOL to refer to the sum of multiple AMWs groups like farmworkers of perishable crops, workers in dairy and poultry farms, meat packers, cattlemen, tobacco fields and plant nurseries. Estimates of the numbers of AMWs in the United States vary enormously. This is probably due to the different definitions followed for the census or the nature of their mobile lifestyle, but also because some counts consider only workers on payroll while others includes all migrant family members (e.g. dependents). Data from the National Agricultural Workers Survey estimates there are over 3 million migrant and seasonal farmworkers in the US, with 75% of them born in Mexico and around 42% entered the US within the 5 years prior to survey. These waves of Hispanic migrant workers follow certain routes or streams outlined in Fig.1 by the National Migrant Resource Program. The Midwest route starts in Mexico and travels through Texas, Arizona, Colorado Kansas and Missouri to Minnesota, Wisconsin
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