California first state to promise overtime to farmworkers

Sacramento | Reuters — California will become the first U.S. state to require farmers to pay overtime to field workers and fruit pickers under a bill signed Monday by Democratic Governor Jerry Brown.

The bill would phase in overtime pay for farmworkers from 2019 to 2022. In an industry where a workweek during the harvest season can be as long as 60 hours, the measure requires farmers to pay overtime after eight hours per day or 40 hours per week.

California’s rule on overtime for people “employed in an agricultural occupation” has, until now, required time and a half to be paid to those working over 10 hours in a workday or more than six straight days in a workweek, and double time after eight hours on a seventh straight workday.

Reporting for Reuters by Sharon Bernstein. Includes files from AGCanada.com Network staff.

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