Author Archives: Jim Schmidt

About Jim Schmidt

Jim Schmidt (1939-2012) served twenty-five years as Director of Farm Worker’s Legal Services of New York, organizing a 180 mile march from Seneca Falls to Albany in April, 2003, to demand economic and social justice for farm workers. Awarded the Rochester Labor Council’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009, Jim helped form the Band of Rebels to protest corporate greed and he actively participated in its demonstrations.

H-2 Worker

film stillWhen Jon asked me to introduce the film I said I was more than glad to do it and I was glad to see that the labor community was showing this film. Having been involved with migrant farm workers for the past twenty some years, I think this film will offend your sense of decency and your sense of honesty and your sense and belief in justice and democracy and freedom, and I’ve got a whole lot of words I can use to talk about what we believe in and what we feel exists in our country. As you watch the film I think you’re going to be offended by its examples of racism in our society. It’s really evident when you look at the H-2A workers and they’re all black, and you look at the members of the Department of Labor and you look at the growers and you look at the festival in celebration of a great harvest that’s attended by all white people as the black Jamaican workers get on a plane furnished by the company and go back to Jamaica. Continue reading