Press Release Provided by California Farm Bureau Federation
California Farm Bureau President Jamie Johansson expressed extreme disappointment at the actions of the California Senate today in passing Assembly Bill 616, which would allow a yearlong mail-in card check system for unionizing instead of a secret ballot election.
“The Senate eliminated the farm employees’ right to choose, for themselves, whether they want to have a portion of their paycheck deducted and sent to a union,” Johansson said. “AB 616, by the Agriculture Labor Relations Board’s own analysis, will result in fewer elections because AB 616 does not require them to occur.”
“The fact is that there will be farm employees who show up to work one day, only to find that they are part of a union, without ever having an opportunity to voice their own desire,” Johansson added. “They are already suffering from lost jobs due to drought, reduced paychecks due to the overtime law and now the Senate takes their right to vote away. This bill will likely pass the Assembly again soon. However, we sincerely hope the governor values the dignity of farm employees enough to protect them from intimidation, preserve their right to vote and protect the sanctity of the secret ballot by vetoing this bad bill.”
The California Farm Bureau works to protect family farms and ranches on behalf of nearly 34,000 members statewide and as part of a nationwide network of nearly 5.6 million Farm Bureau members.