The farmworker wage gap in 2020: Farmworkers earn very low wages compared with other workers: Average hourly wage rate for farmworkers and H-2A workers compared with average hourly wages of other workers, 2020
|Workers with less than HS||$15.06|
|Workers with HS diploma only||$20.09|
Notes: All values are for 2020 and in 2020 dollars. HS = high school. H-2A wage is the national average Adverse Effect Wage Rate for 2020, as reported by the U.S. Department of Labor, and does not reflect the average wage paid to the H-2A workers who were ultimately employed in 2020. Nonsupervisory nonfarm workers’ wage represents the average hourly earnings of production and nonsupervisory employees, total for the private sector, not seasonally adjusted. Nonsupervisory farmworkers’ wage is the gross average hourly wage of field and livestock workers. Data for all workers, and for workers with a high school diploma and less than high school, can be found at the Economic Policy Institute State of Working America Data Library. The H-2A visa program is described by the U.S. Department of Labor as a "temporary agricultural program [that] allows agricultural employers who anticipate a shortage of domestic workers to bring nonimmigrant foreign workers to the U.S. to perform agricultural labor or services of a temporary or seasonal nature."
Sources: Author’s analysis of USDA Farm Labor Survey data and nonfarm wage data from the BLS Current Employment Statistics survey; EPI analysis of CPI-ORG microdata; Office of Foreign Labor Certification historical state AEWRs
Author’s analysis of USDA, Economic Research Service using data from National Agricultural Statistics Service, Farm Labor Survey, and nonfarm wage data are from Bureau of Labor Statistics, Current Employment Statistics survey; EPI analysis of Current Population Survey Outgoing Rotation Group microdata (Economic Policy Institute, State of Working America Data Library); Office of Foreign Labor Certification, “Historical State AEWRs: Adverse Effect Wage Rate by State from 2014 to Present,” U.S. Department of Labor.