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The KUT Longhorn Radio Network Presents: Mexican American Experience Collection

Audio recordings including interviews, music, and informational programs related to the Mexican American community and their concerns in the series "The Mexican American Experience" and "A esta hora conversamos" from the Longhorn Radio Network, 1976-1982.

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PROGRAM INFO

Title:
Collective Bargaining, The Texas Legislature And The Texas Farm Workers Union
Program #
1980-49
Themes:
Politics, Society

Series:
Labor
Host:
Linda Fregoso
Guests:
Antonio Orendain, Forrest Waley, Rudy De La Garza
Date:
Oct 1, 1980

Collective bargaining, the Texas legislature and the Texas Farm Workers Union

Linda Fregoso speaks with Antonio Orendain of the Texas Farm Workers Union, Legislator Forest Whaley, and Professors Rudy de la Garza and I.B. Helburn about an upcoming collective bargaining bill for agricultural workers. She first speaks with de la Garza, who places the farm workers’ struggle for collective bargaining rights in a larger international context. Orendain, the head of the Texas Farm Workers Union, then discusses the history of the bill. Fregoso next speaks with Whaley who expresses his content with the current labor legislation and argues that the bill would negate trespass laws and allow union organizers to invade the private homes and offices of growers. In the next interview clip, Helburn discusses the limited protections for agricultural workers in Texas. Helburn says that fears that trespass laws will be jeopardized are misleading because the law merely guarantees that unions can organize in the fields.

Fregoso then addresses the history of the bill and Orendain reveals how Congressman Whaley has repeatedly held the bill up in committees. In the next clip, Whaley discusses his research in California, which passed a law similar to the Texas collective bargaining rights bill, and his support for the right to work laws, which he believes are in the best interests of producers and workers.

Fregoso discusses Texas’ notoriously hostile attitude toward labor with de la Garza, and he talks about the potential national reverberations if Texas passes the bill. However, Helburg does not believe the legislature will pass the bill in the near future and he explains his reasoning.

 

Center for Mexican American Studies | Department of History | The Benson Latin American Collection

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