California Governor Jerry Brown has vetoed a bill that would make it easier for farm workers to unionize. It’s a move that’s drawing anger from Latinos and farm worker union members who supported Brown’s campaign.
Arturo Rodriguez is president of the United Farm Workers union. He says Brown made the wrong decision.
“The governor chose to side with the powerful agribusiness industry – that’s a $36 billion industry – instead of choosing to side with the farm workers that are the poorest of the poor, making minimum wage, having no benefits,” said Rodriguez.
The bill would have allowed farm workers to organize by signing a petition. Right now, they’re required to use secret ballot elections.
The California Farm Bureau Federation and California Chamber of Commerce strongly opposed the bill. They’ve argued that rather than decreasing intimidation from employers, the measure would actually increase the potential for intimidation from union leaders who want to boost membership.