New Federal Rules for Goat and Sheep Herders
Creating and Controlling Markets Through Regulation
New federal rules covering raising goats and sheep and the importation of foreign, non-immigrant herdsman were published in the Federal Register, August 4, 2011 and creates a new definition for the nanny state. The rules spell out the requirements for food, housing, safety and sanitation to assure the foreign non-immigrants being imported by the big farmer/rancher are comfortable and well paid.
- The employer must provide each shepherd a cell phone, satellite phone, or radio transmitter at no charge.
- The description of anticipated hours of work must state “on call for up to 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.”
- The employer must provide workers’ compensation insurance coverage in all states where the sheepherding and/or goatherding work will be performed.
- The employer must provide workers with three meals a day without charge.
- The employer must cover all travel costs to and from the place of employment and pay the government-specified prevailing wage.
The housing (tents, cabins, shelters) standards alone include:
- II. Mobile Housing Standards
- A. Housing Site
- B. Water Supply
- C. Excreta and Liquid Waste Disposal
- D. Housing Structure
- E. Heating
- F. Lighting
- G. Bathing, Laundry and Hand Washing
- H. Food Storage
- I. Cooking and Eating Facilities
- J. Garbage and Other Refuse
- K. Insect and Rodent Control
- L. Sleeping Facilities
- M. Fire, Safety and First Aid
These rules pertain to importation of foreign workers under the H-2A program of the Department of Labor. The H-2A program has been used by many corporations for at least 20 years whereby they bring in foreigners (engineers, computer specialists etc) and have them trained by the American worker. The foreigner stays tax free, the corporation gets special tax write-offs (extra profit) and the American workers that trained them is replaced by them, saving the company even more money.
Thousands of farms with goats and sheep dot nearly every state and it is growing faster due to the demand for goat meat, milk and cheese, a daily staple all over the world and for rising Arab, Asian, Indian and African immigrant populations in the U.S.
Nearly all the herds are in the range of 20 to 30 and typical large herds range from 200 or 300. Maybe that is the problem: there are too many independent ranchers and farmers out there and the federal government wants to step in and help before problems occur.
Most likely these are part of the plans for corporations to partner with USDA and Department of Labor to create sheep and goat factory farms like the dairy, hog, chicken and egg producers . . . and bleat the small producers to death. This will create another anticompetitive controlled market through regulations for meeting domestic demand for goat and sheep milk, cheese and meat for big corporations . . . and for export. I’m just sayin.