Few Show for Immigration Webinar

Headland, AL - Alabama’s new immigration law continues to be a controversial topic. Friday morning, the Alabama Department of Agriculture held a statewide webinar to help explain key points of the law. However, it may have been bad timing.

A labor law expert addressed farmers and other employers across the state. It was an opportunity to learn more about the controversial and detailed law.

“We’ve gotten a lot of blueberries in this area in recent years, and it requires a lot of hand labor. Of course it is seasonal. So yes, we’re concerned here, but we may not be the hottest spot in the state,” says Larry Wells, Director of the Wiregrass Research and Extension Center in Headland.

While many in the agriculture industry are concerned, those in Henry County failed to show up for Friday’s webinar.

“There’s two things going on. One it’s the harvest season. We’ve also had a week of kind of rainy weather, and we haven’t been able to do anything. So this is really the first day we’ve been able to get back out in the field,” says Wells.

With the rainy weather over the past farmers say now is the perfect time to get in the field and harvest. They also say timing may have been the main issue on why no one showed up for the webinar.

Farmer, Myron Johnson says, “This is just a terrible time. We’re in the field. Everybody’s busy. So it’s hard for anybody to attend anything this time of year.”

Many also rely on other people to get them the information, and the Wiregrass Research and Extension Center is prepared.

“We have three extension agents in here watching it. I’m sure they’re going to get question after question about it. So hopefully we can learn a little bit about it so if they didn’t have the time we can take that message to them,” says Wells.

If you missed the webinar today, it is archived and can be viewed online at: http://www.aces.edu/go/195

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