Are There Enough PPE For Seasonal Farm Workers In WNY?
Seasonal farmworkers are expected to start arriving here in Western New York for the fall harvest and the coronavirus is going to make the job of farmworkers more difficult than in past years.
“They’re always moving from one place to another,” Wilmer Jimenez pointed out about farm workers.
According to WIVB-TV Jimenez is the Western New York associate coordinator for Rural Migrant Ministry. One of the more serious tasks facing him of late has been making sure seasonal workers have all of the equipment necessary to stay safe in the pandemic era.
He is concerned that not all employers are providing the necessary safety equipment.
According to a survey conducted by the New York Farm Bureau in June, 75% of farmers said they had plenty of masks, hand sanitizer, and other PPE for their workers, according to Steve Ammerman, public affairs manager for the farm bureau.
Governor Andrew Cuomo brought up this very same issue earlier this week when discussing coronavirus clusters in the Western New York region.
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“There’s seasonal labor forces that come in for farms,” Cuomo said. “But we do more testing in New York than any other state. So we can identify when you start to see a quote-unquote cluster.”
Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz days ago released a statement about the uptick in cases, encouraging Erie County residents to keep the spread of COVID-19 under control.