June 7, 2023
Agriculture and Foreign Labor Certification Manager
VEC Currently Conducting Annual Survey on Prevailing Practices in Agricultural Employment through July 14
Richmond -- The Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) announced today the agency has begun conducting the annual survey on prevailing practices in agricultural employment. The agency will conduct the survey from June 7 through July 14. Each year, the VEC seeks input from agricultural operations who hire farmworkers and agricultural equipment operators in certain crops, including grapes, nursery stock, fruits, vegetables, sod, aquaculture, hay & grains, livestock, tobacco and Christmas trees. Surveys are mailed to businesses that have been identified by VEC. In addition, employers may also participate in the survey on the VEC website at https://www.vec.virginia.gov/employers/agricultural-services. Electronic surveys can be completed in fillable .pdf format and sent by email to email@example.com or submitted by mail to: VEC Foreign Labor Certification Unit 419 N. Cameron St., 2nd Floor, Winchester, VA 22601.
Federal regulations governing the use of the H-2A Agricultural Guest Worker Program require the VEC to monitor the hiring practices of agricultural employers. Data collected in these surveys address common and prevailing practices such as the advanced payment of transportation costs to workers, job qualifications, recruitment methods, frequency of pay, provision of family housing, productivity standards, and the use of farm labor contractors. The VEC will receive survey responses until July 14, 2023, and will publish survey findings by October 2023. VEC staff will apply findings to H-2A applications filed in Virginia in FY2024. By supplying this data to the VEC, employers can ensure that Virginia’s non-H-2A agricultural employers and its farmworkers are not adversely impacted by the addition of foreign workers to the farm economy.