Survey evidence on legal and illegal Hispanic immigrants’ perceptions of living and working in US agriculture
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This study presents survey evidence on legal and illegal Hispanic immigrants’ perceptions of living and working in the United States. Three key findings emerge that present a negative outlook for the agricultural industry labor supply if a path to legal permanent residence is granted for current illegal immigrants or insufficient provision of temporary work visas for agriculture workers is provided. We find for our sample that there is a marked transition from initial employment in the agricultural industry upon entering the United States to non-agricultural jobs (i.e., agriculture is a gateway job to other opportunities). Second, immigrants working in agriculture jobs perceive greater discrimination and unfair treatment by their employers compared to other industries. Third, workers in agriculture strongly feel that they are not paid fairly for their work. These three features point to a challenging outlook for the future agricultural labor supply.