LULAC Sees An Ally In New Agriculture Secretary
Nation’s Oldest and Largest Latino Civil Rights Organization Is Optimistic about Former Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack in Second Term in Top Ag Job
Washington, DC - Sindy Benavides, National Chief Executive Officer of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) issued the following statement Tuesday on the Senate confirmation of Tom Vilsack as Secretary of Agriculture. Vilsack was selected by President Joe Biden to lead the nation’s governmental agency overseeing a $1.1 trillion dollar industry in the United States and Puerto Rico.
“LULAC welcomes back a good friend during the Obama Administration and we look forward to working with Secretary Vilsack once again. This relationship is important because families in America today spend 13% of their total household income on food related products according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Latinos spend even more based on the U.S. Census statistics that show our families are often larger and younger. Agriculture is also vitally important to the Federal Government because it spends a greater amount of its budget on the nation’s nutrition programs.
Latinos are also vested in agriculture because our labor force in the fields and orchards as well as the beef, pork and poultry sectors is contributing to our farms’ $136-billion in annual output fueling America’s economy. This industry represents 22.2 million jobs every year, more than 10% of the total labor market in our country and Latinos are its lifeblood and strength. LULAC cares deeply about the practices and programs affecting our agricultural community, especially now when Latinos are essential workers putting their lives on the line to put food on our tables.
Very soon, we want to meet with Secretary Vilsack to discuss some of our priorities related to farm workers, their families and communities across the country. This includes job conditions from access to health care and affordable housing to immigration policies impacting Ag and meatpacking workers. LULAC is optimistic that together we can make important strides to overcome setbacks experienced during the past four years.”
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit https://lulac.org/