Letters to the Editor

Treat farmworkers and their families with respect by honoring needs

After a day of work, guest workers socialize at their housing, an old converted Budget Inn in Santa Maria.
After a day of work, guest workers socialize at their housing, an old converted Budget Inn in Santa Maria. jjohnston@thetribunenews.com

It was reassuring to read Andy Pease’s letter (“Responses to Nipomo farmworker housing fire give hope,” April 17) and Lindsey Holden’s article on the importance of housing for farmworkers in our community (“Guest worker program provides labor, poses difficulties for SLO County growers,” April 17). I am also grateful to Tom Ikeda, Greg and Donna France, and Western Sky Properties for making an effort to provide housing for a very special group of people performing backbreaking labor in our community.

As a teacher in Santa Maria, my school is literally in the heart of the fields. The majority of my students are children of farmworkers. In 15 years of teaching, these are my favorite families to work with ... by far! They are kind, respectful and incredibly supportive of our school. Their children are grateful for any opportunities available to them.

I hope, with all my heart, that our community will rise to the occasion and treat the farmworkers with the utmost respect by honoring basic needs such as housing and transportation.

Christina Stamford, San Luis Obispo

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