National newspaper shares story of CoCal laborers

National newspaper shares story of CoCal laborers

Jesus "Chuy" Medrano talked to The Washington Post about his company's H-2B workers.

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October 6, 2017
Industry News
Above photo courtesy of CoCal

DENVER – Jesus "Chuy" Medrano, founder and owner of CoCal Landscape, spent more than $32,000 recruiting and securing visas for the Mexican migrants after scrambling to find any American willing to do backbreaking work under the Colorado sun, according to The Washington Post.

Medrano’s extraordinary recruitment effort – which included three days in Ciudad Juárez while the U.S. Consulate processed the work visas – encapsulates the complex relationship between American employers and temporary foreign workers. In landscaping, tourism, seafood processing and other seasonal industries, employers are desperate to find Americans who will stay on the job for the pay they are able to offer – $14 an hour is the starting salary at Medrano’s firm, The Washington Post reported.

Until now, those industries have leaned heavily on the controversial visa program for seasonal workers, called H-2B visas. But Congress has reduced the number of available visas by nearly 30 percent from 2016, and President Trump’s promise to limit legal as well as illegal immigration and protect American workers has Medrano worried.

The Washington Post met with Medrano, who is one of Lawn & Landscape's Leadership Awards winners this year, along with other employees at CoCal to investigate the issue of providing H-2B visas to seasonal workers. Read the full story from The Washington Post here. 

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