TO THE EDITOR: Recently, Congressman Bill Owens (D) introduced the Family Farm Relief Act, H.R.6373, in coordination with a bipartisan group of New York congressmen.The bill would improve the H-2A Visa program used by family farms in New York state by transferring oversight of the current H-2A farm worker program from the Department of Labor to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.Rep. Owens worked with Reps. Chris Gibson (R) and Tom Reed (R) in support of this bill. All three congressmen have seen first-hand the problems and the issues that growers across the state face when trying to secure reliable farm labor. New York agriculture is a major economic driver for our economy and is dependent on adequate labor. Many New York apple growers rely on the H-2A program as the only legal source of labor.On behalf of New York state apple growers, I want to thank Mr. Owens, Mr. Gibson and Mr. Reed for working across party lines for the good of New York agriculture.
JAMES S. ALLEN
New York Apple Association Inc.
Dignity in death
TO THE EDITOR: No one likes to think about death and dying, but it’s something everyone has to face eventually.
There’s an incredible resource in our community that provides comfort, dignity and respect to all those coping with a serious or life-limiting illness. It’s Hospice of the North Country.
November is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month, a time to reach out to our community to raise awareness about the compassionate care that Hospice and palliative-care provide. It is also a time to say thanks. We appreciate our staff, volunteers, partner agencies and most of all our patients and their families who grant us the privilege of entering their lives at such a sacred time.
One of the most important messages to help people understand is that Hospice care helps patients and families focus on living. We bring dignity and respect to the most difficult of situations.
The Hospice team provides expert medical care to keep patients comfortable and able to enjoy time with loved ones. The Hospice team answers questions, offers advice on what to expect and helps families with the duties of being a caregiver. The team also provides emotional and spiritual support for the entire family.
Hospice is covered by Medicare, Medicaid in most states and by most insurance plans and HMOs. Hospice care is provided in the home, nursing homes, assisted-living facilities and long-term-care centers.
Hospice care is available to people of all ages, with any illness. Hospice professionals and trained volunteers will ask you what’s important and listen to what you say. They make your wishes a priority.
If you or a loved one is facing a serious or life-limiting illness, the time to find out more about Hospice is right now.
KENT W. BROOKS
CEO, Hospice of the North Country