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Agriculture Press Release

February 25, 1998

State and Federal Agencies To Sponsor Farm Worker Meetings

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) are sponsoring two meetings with the farm worker community and worker advocates on the Worker Protection Standard (WPS). The WPS is administered by both agencies to ensure that employees who work with pesticides are provided adequate knowledge, training and protection about safe pesticide use.

Representatives from other state and federal agencies who oversee migrant housing, health and workplace safety also have been invited as neither EPA nor FDACS regulate those issues.

The first meeting will be held Thursday, February 26, in Orlando at the Orlando Public Library, 101 East Central Boulevard, from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. The second meeting will be held the following day (February 27) in West Palm Beach at the Clayton E. Hutcheson Agricultural Service Center (Exhibit Hall B), 559 North Military Trail, during the same hours.

One of the most important responsibilities of FDACS and EPA is to administer state and federal pesticide laws to protect human health. In implementing the Worker Protection Standard, the two agencies work to receive input from worker advocacy groups, as well as grower organizations, to ensure that all parties are knowledgeable about the Standard. FDACS and EPA are committed to continue this effort with their partners to monitor the effectiveness of the program and solicit suggestions for improvement.

Since FDACS began its worker protection program in 1992, education programs, compliance assistance and enforcement actions have been used to ensure compliance with state and federal laws, and more than 7,500 worker trainers have been trained and 490,000 educational documents distributed.

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For More Information:

Terence McElroy
(850) 488-3022


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