May 4, 2020
National Ag Law Center opens online resource library on COVID-19 issues
By Sarah Cato
U of A System Division of Agriculture
- COVID-19 pandemic has caused concerns, confusion in agriculture industry
- National Agricultural Law Center has compiled COVID-19 Resource Library
- Find COVID-19 Resource Library here: https://bit.ly/3cd1IHH
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The COVID-19 pandemic’s dramatic effects on the economy and the subsequent regulatory reactions have hit the agriculture industry hard, making difficult to navigate issues such as agricultural labor, contracts and direct marketing, increasingly confusing.
“Every sector of the agriculture industry has felt the blow of COVID-19,” said Harrison Pittman, Director of the National Agricultural Law Center. “Since early March we have received a steady stream of calls from producers, lawyers, lenders and many more, about a variety of hardships they’re facing as a result of the pandemic.”
To address these concerns, the NALC has created the COVID-19 Resource Library. Set up in a Q-and-A format, the Resource Library is a compilation of resources from various sources, such as state cooperative extension services, federal agencies and more.
According to Pittman, queries regarding various stimulus packages and their application to agriculture have been among the top questions NALC staff have been receiving.
“When the Paycheck Protection Program was first announced, there was considerable confusion regarding whether or not farming operations qualified,” Pittman said. “That, along with questions about H-2A employee qualification and the 500 employee limit, has been one of the most common questions we’ve received.”
These worries, paired with concerns about completing contracts, changes in federal regulations, and numerous H-2A labor questions, make up only a portion of the calls and emails the NALC has received since the start of the pandemic.
“This library is meant to provide answers to some of the questions we’ve been getting on an increasingly frequent basis,” Pittman said. “Because these issues can quickly change, we’ve included dates by very entry in order to ensure our stakeholders stay up to date.”
The Resource Library is divided up into topics such as “Labor & Employment” and “Direct Marketing,” and covers a variety of issues related to agriculture and the COVID-19 pandemic.
The COVID-19 Resource Library can be found here: https://bit.ly/3cd1IHH
About the National Agricultural Law Center
The National Agricultural Law Center serves as the nation’s leading source of agricultural and food law research and information. The Center works with producers, state and federal policymakers, Congressional staffers, attorneys, land grant universities, and many others to provide objective, nonpartisan agricultural and food law research and information to the nation’s agricultural community.
The Center is a unit of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture and works in close partnership with the USDA Agricultural Research Service, National Agricultural Library.
About the Division of Agriculture
The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation’s historic land grant education system.
The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses.
The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action institution. If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need materials in another format, please contact 479-575-4607 as soon as possible. Dial 711 for Arkansas Relay.
National Agricultural Law Center
University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture