Mexican farmers, farmworkers are struggling
It has been a challenging year for farmers around the world, with the pandemic, rough weather, and economic shutdowns. While the southern border is facing a surge of immigrants, we are getting an inside look at the limited access Mexican farmers have to everyday tools.
A Waxahachie, Texas-based missionary tells us she devotes her time to help provide food and clothing for the people of Mexico. She says that while traveling Mexico over the years, she learned its farmers use an antiquated system.
According to Victoria Cortina, “It’s very bad. They get produce or whatever it is that they grow only if it rains. There’s very bad irrigation, for one. For two, the people do not have the right equipment. They’re donkeys, their oxes are not enough.”
The farmworkers of Mexico often do not have the nutrition to provide energy to work all day on the fields.
“They have to use their bare hands; they don’t have the proper food, especially vegetables are very hard to get here. Very expensive!” Cortina states. “They basically strive on beans. They try and get their families across in the U.S. to bring them food.”
The pandemic made it even worse for the nation. Now, if things were not hard enough for the people of Mexico, the recent freeze that hurt Texas also hurt parts of the country.
The street vendors say that it has been devastating for an already ailing economy.
“No, it’s not going well... All of the crop is messed up from the freeze. It’s no good for Mexico,” Adolfo Rodriguez states.
According to one street vendor, unlike the U.S., the government of Mexico does not provide funds for farmers. They are on their own: “There is no help from the government here. The farmers were not supported on anything.”
While on this shoot, I was interrupted by a group that was trying to get me to help them seek asylum in the U.S. Initially, I tried to lose them, as a journalist, I cannot involve myself in a story. They would send me pleas on their cell phone using Google translate.
Finally, I agreed to interview them about why they want asylum in the U.S.
“What happened is my family lost everything in Oaxaca. Over there, the tradition is agriculture... They lost their crops,” they stated.
They seemed disappointed that I had to end the interview, but I could not do much of anything for them.
Makes you grateful to be in America.