Jun 21, 2021
Plan to vaccinate H-2A temporary workers shared by ag employers’ group

The National Council of Agricultural Employers announced June 21 that the council’s ongoing collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control has resulted in another opportunity to protect farmworkers from COVID-19.

“Earlier this year, NCAE members participated with the CDC in a pilot project to test H-2A workers for COVID and quarantine infected workers in Mexico prior to transiting to their temporary jobs in the States,” Michael Marsh, NCAE president and CEO, said in a news release..  “This pilot project was successful in identifying not only a very low incidence of infection (1.3% based on preliminary data), but also an opportunity to collaborate to protect farmworker health and protect U.S. public health.”

Capitalizing on this previous partnership, the CDC has notified the National Council of Agricultural Employers (NCAE) that the County of San Diego is providing free COVID-19 vaccines to H-2A workers crossing into the U.S. from Tijuana, Mexico at vaccination sites near the U.S.-Mexico border. The Johnson and Johnson vaccine will be offered, but the Pfizer-BioNTech or another vaccine may be offered upon request by a worker and depending on its availability.

“The safety of essential farmworkers is of paramount importance to agricultural employers and NCAE is very excited by this new opportunity to assist farm and ranch families in protecting the workers who feed and clothe us from this deadly pandemic while protecting public health at the same time,” said Marsh.

Agricultural employers interested in participating in this vaccine pilot program should email NCAE’s Manager of Association Services Nigel Bocanegra at [email protected] for details on how to participate.

NCAE is the national trade association focusing on agricultural labor issues from the employer’s viewpoint.

 


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