Business benefits of Responsible Recruiting

July 24, 2019 11:21 am, Published by , Leave your thoughts

The US produce economy in the United States is at the mercy of a quickly shrinking pool of foreign — often undocumented — labor. American agriculture relies on hundreds of thousands of skilled workers to plant the fields, tend the crops, harvest the produce and pack it for markets both here and abroad.  Yet, the labor force is not always guaranteed during the short window in which fruits and vegetables need to be harvested, packed and shipped to market.  The current H-2A program, which is supposed to assist farmers, too often falls short in meeting growers’ or workers’ needs.  Farm labor contractors (FLC) are playing an increasingly important role in helping growers during labor shortages.

We believe broad collaboration is needed. Stronger Together US has launched a new, collaborative, multi-stakeholder responsible recruitment program for the US produce industry to address some of these challenges, and drive a win-win situation for all parties involved. 

The program brings together industry stakeholders to discuss and explore challenges and opportunities within an industry-wide approach to responsible recruitment. The program will provide guidance, training and online tools including the Responsible Recruitment Toolkit, to build capability, self-assess and report progress across all areas of responsible recruitment and in the mitigation of forced labor risks, as well as pilot the pioneering social labor assurance certification Clearview for labor brokers.

We invite growers, farm labor contractors, packers, distributors, foodservice operators, marketers and retailers of fresh produce across the supply chain to get involved today!   You can support the program, and demonstrate leadership in responsible recruitment, in any of the following ways:

All: Come to our Florida Stronger Together US Responsible Recruitment Round Table event (details of the California event coming soon) exploring pathways for a responsible recruitment marketplace.

Retailers / Buyers

  • Opportunity to join the Stakeholder Forum for Responsible Recruitment
  • Free places on awareness raising and capacity building training workshops on responsible recruitment and mitigating risks for growers and FLC’s in your fresh produce supply chain – coming 2020
  • Free access to online self-assessment tools to support monitoring and progress in implementing guidance on responsible recruitment for growers and FLC’s in your fresh produce supply chain
  • Promote your involvement in the program and demonstrate commitment to responsible recruitment by displaying your logo on the program website.

Growers:

  • Opportunity to join our Responsible Recruitment Stakeholder Forum
  • Free places available on our training workshops on responsible recruitment and mitigating risks – coming 2020
  • Access to free online guidance and tools to support your businesses to track and monitor progress in implementing responsible recruitment best practice.  

FLC’s:

  • Opportunity to join our Responsible Recruitment Stakeholder Forum
  • Free places available on our training workshops on responsible recruitment and mitigating risks – coming 2020
  • Opportunity for free registration on the Responsible Recruitment Toolkit, an online platform that enables businesses to self-assess, track and report, internally and externally to clients, their progress made in embedding ethical and responsible management systems and business practices. (limited places available – first come, first serve)

Working together we can stimulate a labor marketplace that rewards ethical and transparent farm labor contractors with more business over time, which boosts the supply of ethically sourced labor for employers, that provides assurances to buyers that the produce supply chain is well-managed and free from exploitation, and that positively impacts migrant worker pre-employment experiences.

Please get involved today, by contacting us at [email protected].  

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