Bread for the World says immigration bill should focus on hunger
By William Lambers on June 27, 2013
Bread for the World, in a report released yesterday, called for immigrant farm workers to be given "a path to citizenship" which would include access to federal food aid programs. This would include the food stamp program (SNAP).
Currently, immigrant workers who fill jobs on farms receive low wages and their families suffer from hunger as a result.
Kiara Oritz, of Bread for the World, writes, "How can someone live and work on a farm and suffer from hunger? Yet immigrant farm workers, who are so vital to the U.S. food system, disproportionately suffer from hunger and poverty."
Bread for the World wants the Senate to focus on hunger in any immigration legislation. They want the Senate to recognize the root causes of the immigration which is extreme poverty.
Andrew Wainer of Bread for the World writes, "effective policy should include better integration of U.S. immigration and development policies. Our government should acknowledge that poverty and lack of economic opportunity in neighboring countries accounts for most unauthorized immigration."
In Mexico, for instance, Catholic Relief Services says over 47 percent of the population is classified as poor and another 4 percent are considered extremely poor (living on less than $1.25 per day).
Ortiz adds, "We need to fight for fair and equal pay, better working conditions, a legal means of being in the United States for those who require it, and respect for all farm workers."