DOL 'Abdicated' Duty To Protect Ag Wages, Judge Says

Law360 (March 3, 2021, 7:45 PM EST) -- The Labor Department "abdicated [its] duty to protect the wages of domestic workers" by using "flawed" data to approve agricultural wage rates, a Washington federal judge has said, ordering the agency to immediately reset the rates to prevent further damage to workers' livelihoods.

U.S. District Judge Salvador Mendoza Jr. excoriated the federal labor watchdog for certifying wage rates based on a state survey of growers that seems to "entirely disregard accuracy," and in which "none of the responses can be deemed reliable," according to Monday's order.

Employers who bring in foreign labor must abide by federal wage guidelines to ensure domestic...

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