Management of Hispanic Employees on New York Dairy Farms: A Survey of Farm Managers
Maloney, Thomas R.
In recent years there has been an increasing number of Hispanic employees working on New York dairy farms. This survey describes the experiences and current employment practices of New York dairy farm managers who employ Hispanic workers. The 20 employers in the study represented most of the dairies in New York that employed Hispanic workers. The purpose of the survey was to benchmark current employment practices on New York dairy farms employing Hispanic workers. The questionnaire examined a variety of employment related issues including language, recruiting patterns, wages, transportation, housing and cultural issues. Dairy employers have been very resourceful in recruiting and managing Hispanic workers. Despite culture and language differences, employers found positive ways to manage Hispanic employees. While most of the working relationships with Hispanic employees have been positive, several challenges exist. Solving the language problem is the greatest initial challenge since few Hispanic workers speak English. In addition, managers must understand cultural differences to avoid misunderstandings and interpersonal problems. Employers reported other challenges including illegal immigration, community relations and turnover.
Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, Cornell University