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NPR has a terrific series going on to start 2014 looking at the effects of the North American Free Trade Agreement 20 years after it took effect. How the free trade pact affected labor, immigration, wages, the environment, and much more. All the...
Want to watch celebrities milk a cow? Sample the excitement as media personalities concoct the tastiest milkshake? You can witness a calve being born, see the butter sculpture contest, watch the dairy day parade, and then wash it all down with a 25...
Need work? Got skills? Willing to try life in Canada? Well, Canada’s federal government has opened a skilled labor program for  “…to 24 eligible occupations, in addition to applicants with a qualifying job offer or those...
The dairy lobby is flexing its legislative muscles this week with some progress on a couple fronts. Today, Governor Cuomo came through on a promise he made at the Yogurt Summit last summer to raise the threshold when strict environmental rules...
Plenty of White House budget analysis in the news today. On the agriculture side of things, President Obama wants to make deep cuts to the direct payment to farmers program, which has been widely criticized as misguided government spending. Farmers...


Immigration
Apr 11, 2014 — Regular political commentators, E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and David Brooks of The New York Times, discuss Kathleen Sebelius' resignation, Jeb Bush's immigration comments and the civil rights anniversary.
Mar 29, 2014 — Residents of a small town in southern Arizona say a local Border Patrol checkpoint is unnecessary and that agents have overstepped legal bounds. So now they conduct their own form of surveillance.
Mar 29, 2014 — Latino activists have changed their strategy, tired of waiting for Congress to pass immigration legislation. Instead of pursuing lawmakers, many are calling on the White House to act on its own.
Mar 19, 2014 — With deportations at a record high under the Obama administration, and with immigration reform stalled in Congress, Dreamer protest groups are trying to keep the issue alive with actions of their own.
Mar 17, 2014 — A year after the release of a Republican Party report on what went wrong in 2012, party leaders say they have better data collection and outreach. Immigration reform, however, remains a thorny issue.
 

Special Reports

Audio Series
Farm to Farm, Family to Family: David Sommerstein travels with NC dairy farmers to a Mexican village many of their migrant workers call home.
Audio Series
Hispanic Workers on North Country Farms
Five years ago, just a handful of farmers in the North Country employed Hispanic workers. Now many use workers from Latin America. The transition can be a bumpy one, for farmers and for the people they hire. David Sommerstein tells their stories in this ongoing series.

Migrant workers - still harvest of shame?

More and more American farms are employing workers from Mexico and Central America. Even as far north and east as the North Country -- the number of Mexican and Central Americans working on dairy farms has risen dramatically. Industry leaders agree farms depend on reliable, plentiful Hispanic labor to survive.

A group of New York farmers is in the Veracruz area this week, hoping to learn more about traditional farming, local customs and life in their workers villages. Workers who come this far usually leave their families behind, and plan to return home.

A North Country dairy farm might employ a half dozen Mexican farmhands. But crop farming requires much more help, and the demand rises and falls with the planting and harvesting. During the growing season, nearly 300 workers and their children live in migrant camps around the K. W. Zellers family farm in rural northeast Ohio. Julie Grant spent some time at the Zellers' farm this fall.  Go to full article

Report: immigrants moving to rural America

The story of immigrants flooding America's cities is almost as old as the United States itself. But a new report shows a shifting trend. While cities remain the main destination, a growing number of immigrants are settling in small, rural communities. They're drawn to jobs in agriculture, meatpacking, and the tourism and resort industries. Leif Jensen wrote the report for the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire. He told David Sommerstein that immigrants to small towns tend to poorer and less well educated than those who settle in cities. They also tend to be Mexican, married, and employed.  Go to full article

Small protest to hispanic laborers

There's been little public opposition in the North Country to the growing number of Hispanic workers on dairy farms. But earlier this month, a small group protested outside the St. Lawrence County Farm Bureau's "A Day at the Farm" event at Jon Greenwood's dairy in Canton. Todd Moe has more.  Go to full article

Mexican corridos: the people's autobiography in song

A St. Lawrence University professor specializes in a genre of Mexican music that tells the stories of how migrant workers get to the United States. Martha Chew-Sanchez is...  Go to full article

Guard Heads To Mexico Border

The Glens Falls Post Star is reporting this morning that National Guardsmen from the North Country will be sent to Arizona to help patrol the US-Mexico border. Brian...  Go to full article

Commentary: Jill Vaughan Undocumented

Commentator Jill Vaughan didn't know whether she was an undocumented alien, or an illegal immigrant. What she did know was that she didn't have proof of citizenship. And the...  Go to full article

Minutemen Plan Boat Patrol on St. Lawrence

The controversial civilian border watch group known as the Minutemen has started a new Watertown chapter. They have a handful of members so far, but ambitious plans... next...  Go to full article

In Toronto, Two Cultures Collide

The arrest of 17 Muslim men and boys in a Toronto suburb on terror charges has triggered a new debate over Canada's approach to immigration. Tolerance and multiculturalism...  Go to full article

Farm Bureau Warns of Immigration Raids

The New York Farm Bureau is cautioning farmers to watch out for immigration officials. An e-mail alert reports of roadblocks and farm raids as federal agents step up their...  Go to full article

Farmers on the Wrong Side of the Law

Over the last five years, the number of Mexican and Central Americans working on the North Country's dairy farms has risen dramatically. Industry leaders agree farms depend...  Go to full article

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