Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Apr 28, 2020 / 15:47 pm
The bishops of the United States have called for increased protections and support for farm workers during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
An April 29 statement from the U.S. bishops' coference, co-signed by four bishops, advocated that employers of migrant and farm workers, as well as public health officials, acknowledge that "all workers need access to free testing and care related to the COVID-19 virus."
The bishops called for renewed commitments from employers to ensure that housing and transportation provided for farm workers is safe and compliant with Centers for Disease Control guidelines, that information on health and hygiene practices is "easily accessible in multiple languages" and that workers be given any appropriate personal protective equipment.
The statement was signed by Archbishop Nelson Perez of Philadelphia, chairman of the USCCB Committee on Cultural Diversity; Bishop Joseph Tyson of Yakima, who leads the Subcommittee on Pastoral Care of Migrants, Refugees and Travelers (PCMRT); Bishop Oscar Cantu of San Jose, the PCMRT's episcopal liaison for migrant farmworker ministry; and Bishop Mario Dorsonville, an auxiliary bishop of Washington and leader of the USCCB's Committee on Migration.