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  1. Social Security and Retirement
  2. Retirement Age and Social Security
  3. Working at Home
  4. Longer Years of Retirement
  5. Employment trends
  6. Foreign workers in the United States
  7. Mexican Workers in the United States
  8. Workplace Safety Standards
  9. Work-related Injuries and Deaths
  10. Growth of Large Corporate Farming
  11. Union Membership Across the United States
  12. Laws Regarding Working Women
  13. Labor Contracts in the United States
  14. Right-to-Work Laws
  15. Public worker unions in the United States
  16. Unemployment insurance
  17. Equal Opportunity Employment Laws
  18. Workers’ Compensation
  19. Minimum Age for Agricultural Employment
  20. Minors in the Workplace
  21. Minimum Wage
  22. Employment of Persons with Disabilities
  23. Major Equal Employment Legislation in the U.S.
  24. Employment in the Service Sector
  25. Unemployment
  26. State’s Unique Worker’s Compensation Laws
  27. Life on Unemployment
  28. Minimum Wage and Poverty
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Three man stand by a pickup truck..
Mexican migrant laborers provide support to farms in the American southwest.
Photo Courtesy of Inside Chico State.
Mexican Workers in the United States
The first large guest worker program began during World War II when thousands of workers came from Mexico to the United States to work mostly as contracted agricultural workers. These workers were called braceros because they worked with their brazos, or arms. Between 1942 and 1964, when the program ended, more than four and a half million braceros came to the United States. While they were supposed to return to Mexico after their contracts expired, many of these Mexican guest workers settled in the southwestern part of the United States. Since the ending of the bracero program, increasing numbers of Mexican farm workers have worked illegally in the U.S. By 1997, over 600,000 farm workers were working in the U.S. without proper visa. Undocumented immigration of Mexican workers into the United States has become a volatile political issue in the west and southwestern United States. Some people argue that these workers take jobs away from Americans, while others say that the Mexican workers are doing jobs that Americans would not take and that they play an important role in the American economy. Estimates place the number of Mexican workers in the U.S. at about 4 million.
Special Terms: World War II  |  contract

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