Farm Labor Sweep Reveals Overall Compliance with Farm Labor Laws
April 25, 2008
Treasure coast – The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s Farm Labor Enforcement Unit, which is responsible for enforcing farm labor worker safety laws, swept a number of counties this week in a proactive effort to ensure compliance by farm labor contractors. The three-day-long sweep was designed to educate employees and employers on farm labor safety laws, ensure compliance, and enforce the laws when violations were discovered. The week-long sweep resulted in 16 violations observed. The last sweep, which occurred earlier in the month, uncovered 51 violations.
The sweep lasted for three consecutive days and consisted of 15 investigators and supervisors. The task force conducted compliance inspections of 93 farms in five counties. Department personnel conducted 267 inspections, developed 11 cases and observed 16 violations. The violations that were found included: failure to provide toilets, field sanitation violations, failure to exhibit certificates of registration, vehicle safety violations, and failure to post the terms and conditions of employment.
Valencia oranges, grapefruit and mercott hybrids were the main crops being harvested during the sweep, though bell peppers, tomatoes, corn, melons and a few basil spice farms were also inspected.
The Department has the authority to assess fines of up to $2,500 for each major farm labor violation. Fine amounts are dependent upon the severity of the violation and the violators’ history. In extreme cases, the Department has the power to revoke a license or refuse to renew a license.
The Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s mission is to license efficiently and regulate fairly. The Department licenses more than one million businesses and professionals ranging from real estate agents, veterinarians, and accountants to contractors and cosmetologists. For more information, please visit www.MyFloridaLicense.com