Rouzer Encourages Appropriations Leaders to Stabilize Labor Wages for Farm Families

WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman David Rouzer (NC-07) joined 119 of his colleagues on a bipartisan letter encouraging House Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), and Education appropriations leaders to include an H-2A visa guestworker wage freeze in upcoming government funding legislation.

In a letter to House Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, & Education leadership, the Members wrote, “We write with shared concerns regarding the annual adjustment to the Adverse Effect Wage Rate (AEWR). Now in 2024, the H-2A labor rates paid by agricultural employers have become more unaffordable, and it will certainly increase in 2025 as well.  The new rates put further financial strain on farm operations of all sizes, and we urge you to include an H-2A wage freeze in Fiscal Year 2025 appropriations legislation.  The national average AEWR has already more than doubled over the past two decades, making agricultural guest labor unaffordable for farm employers and resulting in higher consumer costs.”

The Members further emphasized, “While more permanent solutions are needed to address the AEWR’s past impact and its future trajectory, we request that the Fiscal Year 2025 appropriations bill prohibit funds from being used to implement a wage larger than the January 2023 wage rate or otherwise freeze the H-2A wage rates at January 2023 levels.  Thank you for your attention to this important matter.”

Read the full letter here.


As a Member of the House Agriculture Committee’s Agricultural Labor Working Group, Congressman Rouzer has been working alongside stakeholders, employers, and workers to identify and address the complexities and burdens facing the nation’s agriculture workforce to ensure our producers have the support they need to continue to feed America and the world.

In March, the Agricultural Labor Working Group released their final report detailing twenty-one policy recommendations to ease the workforce crisis impacting the agriculture industry across the country.