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Rebroadcast: Migrant Workers

Who picks the food you eat?

We close our special week of As We Are rebroadcasts with a conversation about life as a migrant worker - past and present.

You’ll meet Moises, a young man here with no documentation, who collects moss and mushrooms for a living. He passed the GED in Spanish after help from a community college program. You’ll also meet Conception Hernandez, a mother of five. She came to the US after her husband, who had worked for years illegally, got amnesty and decided to stay.

Our other guests grew up working the fields but have now left them behind. Mario Magana was caught several times trying to walk across the US-Mexico border in the 1980s. He now teaches in Oregon State University’s extension service. For part of her childhood, Carmen Pachuca lived truly a migrant life. Her family would stay in one place as long as a crop was ripe for the picking, then move on. For a while, they lived in a migrant camp near Woodburn, a place Carmen remembers as lively and warm, despite crude living conditions. She left agricultural work and became a healthcare aide — but both she and Mario still clearly remember the fields.

Have you picked crops? Are there migrant workers in your community? You can read comments from the initial broadcast here and add your own, or post below.

We’ll be back live on Monday!

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