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Letter: Tell Goggin not to pick immigrants' pockets

To the editor:

"I want to go up there and be the representative, be the public servant, be the voice for all the people of Senate District 21." (Goggin to proceed to Senate, Nov. 9, 2016)

Quite an honorable quote spoken by freshman Sen. Mike Goggin. He represents, as quoted, all of us in Minnesota's Senate District 21.

But in less than a month at the Capitol, Goggin authors House File 899. Following his party's anti-worker pro-corporate agenda, the senator sponsors a piece of legislation designed to eliminate time-and-one-half pay provisions for temporary migrant agriculture workers.

And who speaks for these workers? Not the aforementioned "voice" of Goggin.

He knows full well the seasonal farm workers won't complain. Reason: Complain and be fired. Complain and lose your refrigerator. Worse, complain and be deported, leaving your family behind.

Corporate supporters of HF 899 believe the $12 average hourly wage these workers make is enough because they work a lot of hours. They say these workers don't need overtime. Perhaps the compensation Goggin makes at his seasonal job at the Capitol is enough for him. After all, like the workers he is trying to take wages away from, Goggin's capital job is certainly seasonal and may be temporary.

HF 899 is a shameful bill. It doesn't reflect the values of Minnesota. In Minnesota, our government cares about people, especially people who can't fend for themselves. That is the main reason we have government.

Call your "representative," Sen. Goggin, at 651-296-5612 and tell him to withdraw HF 899. It is a misguided bill designed to pick the pockets of migrant farm workers while they pick our crops.

Bruce Yernberg

Red Wing