Agricultural labor housing

Farm Labor Camp Housing

A Seasonal Farm Labor Camp is living quarters, including housing accommodations, motels, rooming houses, dormitories, and mobile homes maintained directly or indirectly in connection with any work of or place where work is being performed by seasonal farm workers, whether or not rent is paid or reserved for use or occupancy. The Seasonal Farm Labor Act and regulation sets standards for conditions of work, living quarters, occupancy, camp sanitation, food facilities, fire protection, and safety of seasonal farm workers.

Who is an employer?

An individual, firm, partnership, association, trust, corporation, or a person or group of persons acting directly or indirectly in the interest of an employer in relation to an employee employing or permitting to work a seasonal farm worker.

What is a farm labor contractor?

A person, who for payment, wages, salary, fees or other consideration, either for himself or on behalf of another person, recruits, solicits, hires, furnishes or transports five or more seasonal farm workers in a calendar year for employment in agriculture or agriculture-related industry.

What is Seasonal or Temporary?

"Seasonal" - work performed at certain seasons or periods of the year and from its nature cannot be continuous or carried on throughout the year.

"Temporary" - Individual is employed for less then one year OR occupancy of living quarters away from the person's domicile for the purpose of agricultural labor.

What is a seasonal farm labor camp permit?

Any seasonal farm labor camp within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is required to hold a valid permit prior to occupancy of the camp. Permits are issued yearly after a satisfactory housing inspection is complete. There is no fee for the camp permit. A routine unannounced inspection will also occur within the permitting year.

Employer Services

The SWA helps agricultural employers meet their labor needs by referring available, qualified U.S. workers, to agricultural job orders before the employer recruits foreign workers. The SWA assists migrant and seasonal agricultural workers by providing the full range of employment services available through the PA CareerLinkTM as well as referral to supportive agencies. The SWA also conducts prevailing wage and prevailing practice surveys for select crop harvesting activities and provides the information to the USDOL.

During the harvest season, the SWA representatives and State Monitor Advocate conduct outreach to migrant and seasonal agricultural workers and offer referral assistance to employers to ensure that they will have workers to harvest the crops. The SWA also assists the agricultural employer to file an agricultural clearance order to bring foreign workers to ensure the crops are harvested on time. Additionally, the state's Bureau of Labor Law Compliance, assists crew leaders with their applications for Federal and State Farm Labor Contractor Licenses.

PA CareerLink administers an Internet based labor exchange titled the Commonwealth Workforce Development System (CWDS). This self-service, automated system enables employers, attorneys, agents to independently post job openings and search for workers. It enables job seekers to search through job openings and to submit their resumes or job applications to employers or their representative Point of Contact (POC).