My family has lived in Bakersfield for most of my life. Bakersfield brought many opportunities for my mother as a Dreamer and an immigrant.
Since I can remember, she has always been a hard worker and worked in the fields. Through the cold, the 105-degree heat and the rain, she has worked to put food on the table without complaining about the horrible benefits farmworkers like herself receive. Farmworkers should be able to qualify for better benefits through health care, free work shoes, dental assistance and even discounts on groceries. They work to bring food to each of our mouths and get paid minimum wage for working in these conditions.
I started working at an Amazon warehouse this year and I was surprised to see the difference in pay, workload and benefits. As an Amazon employee, the least I will get paid is $15 per hour and I can work up to 50 to 60 hour shifts each week. I also get access to higher positions and education, stocks, discounts on Apple and HP items, health care, free shoes from Zappos and even help on insurance.
I am not asking for a higher pay for farmworkers, although they do deserve it, I just believe that farmworkers should be able to have access to more than just a paycheck. Benefits for farmworkers should be an essential because of the struggles they have had to face just to get enough money to support their families.
Alondra Macario, Bakersfield