Time to for FBI to bust ALRB-UFW racket? One lawmaker thinks so

Time for FBI to help California farmworkers fight the ALRB-UFW protection racket.

The state of California has become so corrupt, with workers having almost nowhere to turn to escape the ALRB-UFW protection racket, that it’s time to call in the FBI.

That’s what Assemblyman Jim Patterson told KMJ radio host Ray Appleton today.

This really changes things.

A 30-year employee of the ALRB in Visalia revealed systematic corruption inside the agency to force workers to join the UFW.

“What this whistleblower has said,” Patterson explained, “is that the ALRB as a racket for the UFW is more important than the farmworkers.”

Protection racket

The ALRB should “be the arbiter of peace in the field. Where’s a problem, you work it through,” Patterson said. Instead, “the ALRB is a UFW protection racket.”

“The ALRB is criminally involved in efforts to force” workers to join UFW, he said.

Stressing his point, Patterson said that the ALRB is a “corrupt UFW protection racket [that] comes down not only on the grower, but on thousands upon thousands of farmworkers.”

That “racketeering,” the lawmaker added, may result in “criminal charges against governor” Jerry Brown.

Is it time to bring in the FBI to investigate? Appleton asked Patterson.

“This is an invitation [to the FBI] to come in and look at it,” the assemblyman replied.

Farmorkers have nowhere else to turn but to state and federal courts and the FBI. “The new attorney general [Xavier] Becerra and Governor Brown are going to do everything they can to keep this whistleblower’s words out of the public record,” Patterson said.

“It’s maybe time to blow that whistle,” suggested Appleton.

The California state’s one-party government is now “bordering on criminal rule,” said Patterson.

Time to ‘fire’ the whole ALRB board

“This governor ought to fire every member on that board,” Patterson told Appleton. “He should clean house from top to bottom.”

“He’s appointed essentially UFW hacks to the board,” Patterson said.

The lawmaker and radio host discussed years of “collusion” and “backroom dealing” between ALRB and the UFW, in violation of the state’s own Agricultural Labor Relations Act that governs the agency.

New realities don’t need old, obsolete regulatory mechanisms

The UFW and ALRB might have been needed at one time, but today’s realities of worker-employee cooperation don’t make them very relevant to most workers any more. “They’re yesterday’s news,” Patterson said. “There’s an entire working environment where farmers and growers are working with each other.”

The ALRB and other state machinery, said Patterson, violate “protection rights of growers and the due process rights of farmworkers to be heard in court.”

“Every time we’ve gone into the third part of an equal separate government courts, the ALRB and all their corruptness has been demonstrated,” Patterson said. “You would think that the governor and attorney general would not continue to defend the indefensible.”

California, Patterson said, has an “out of control government that is coming close to criminal behavior.”

 

Note: The quotes in this article are from Pick Justice’s real-time transcribing of the interview. KMJ will produce a podcast of the interview, so readers and listeners may make comparisons.

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