Black Americans Sue U.S. Farms for Replacing Them with Foreign Workers

Black Americans who spent most of their lives working on Mississippi farms are suing their former employer after they were replaced by foreign workers on the H-2A visa program.

The lawsuit, filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi, accuses Pitts Farms of laying off a number of black Americans, only to replace them with foreign visa workers from South Africa. . .

In interviews with the New York Times, black Americans said they had spent most of their lives earning a living as farm workers at Pitts Farms. The work is part of a long history wherein black Americans along the Mississippi Delta have spent grueling hours on farms doing intense physical labor.

One of the black Americans suing Pitts Farms, 50-year-old Richard Strong, told the Times that he has worked on farms for more than 25 years. His father and grandfather did so as well, as well as his enslaved ancestors.

Strong said about 10 years ago is when he noticed farms along the Mississippi Delta began importing foreign visa workers, almost entirely from South Africa. When the first groups arrived, Strong said he helped train them. Now, more than 100 U.S. farms along the Delta employ foreign visa workers from South Africa over Americans. (Read more from “Black Americans Sue U.S. Farms for Replacing Them With Foreign Workers” HERE)

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