America faces a mental health crisis that predates the pandemic but has been significantly worsened by it. Employees have felt incredible stress, burnout, financial insecurity, increased strains on their mental health and a lack of supervisor support for more than a year now. This is especially true of essential workers. In an American Psychological Association poll conducted in February, nearly 3 in 10 essential workers said their mental health has worsened over the past year, and essential workers were two times more likely than nonessential workers to have been diagnosed with a mental-health disorder since the pandemic started.

Essential workers in agriculture and related industries–including the almost 3 million farmworkers who plant, pick and pack our food–make up a $1.1 trillion sector of America’s economy. As people panicked upon encountering empty supermarket shelves in the early days of the pandemic, there was renewed attention to farmworkers’ critical role in our society. But the labor conditions that farmworkers endure have further deteriorated since then, and many of these essential workers have had their lives endangered by a devastating combination of the COVID-19, employer neglect and mental-health challenges.

More in category

The 30 most popular Prime Day deals to shop during Amazon's massive 2-day sale
June 21, 2021USA Today
The 30 most popular Prime Day deals to shop during Amazon's massive 2-day sale
Florida Mayor Regrets Calling Fatal Pride Parade Crash a 'Terrorist Attack'
June 21, 2021Newsweek
Florida Mayor Regrets Calling Fatal Pride Parade Crash a 'Terrorist Attack'
Michelangelo Mediation: A Strategy for Conflict Resolution
June 21, 2021Newsweek
Michelangelo Mediation: A Strategy for Conflict Resolution
Hero Waitress Rescues Injured Driver From Burning Car
June 21, 2021Newsweek
Hero Waitress Rescues Injured Driver From Burning Car
Herd of Elephants Seen Making Cross-Country Journey
June 21, 2021Newsweek
Herd of Elephants Seen Making Cross-Country Journey
Maryland Finds 1.3M Fraudulent Unemployment Claims Since Pandemic Started
June 21, 2021Newsweek
Maryland Finds 1.3M Fraudulent Unemployment Claims Since Pandemic Started
Bill O'Reilly Says Skin Color, Drugs Only City Problems, Compares SF to WY
June 21, 2021Newsweek
Bill O'Reilly Says Skin Color, Drugs Only City Problems, Compares SF to WY
Matt Taibbi discusses the legacy of the Steele dossier
June 21, 2021The Hill
Matt Taibbi discusses the legacy of the Steele dossier
Poll: 30 percent of GOP voters believe Trump will 'likely' be reinstated this year
June 21, 2021The Hill
Poll: 30 percent of GOP voters believe Trump will 'likely' be reinstated this year
Poll: 61 percent say Fauci has been truthful to the best of his knowledge on COVID-19 origins
June 21, 2021The Hill
Poll: 61 percent say Fauci has been truthful to the best of his knowledge on COVID-19 origins
Obama: Voting rights bill must pass before next election
June 21, 2021The Hill
Obama: Voting rights bill must pass before next election
Child Tax Credit: Here's who will get up to $1,800 per child in cash
June 21, 2021CBS
Child Tax Credit: Here's who will get up to $1,800 per child in cash
Supreme Court rules for student-athletes in battle with NCAA
June 21, 2021CBS
Supreme Court rules for student-athletes in battle with NCAA
Amazon Prime Day 2021: Discounts may not be all that prime
June 21, 2021CBS
Amazon Prime Day 2021: Discounts may not be all that prime
Weightlifter will be first trans athlete to compete at Olympics
June 21, 2021CBS
Weightlifter will be first trans athlete to compete at Olympics
U.S. woman found dead in Russia after mom got disturbing text
June 21, 2021CBS
U.S. woman found dead in Russia after mom got disturbing text
Tropical Storm Claudette blamed for at least 14 deaths
June 21, 2021CBS
Tropical Storm Claudette blamed for at least 14 deaths
Airlines, unions ask the attorney general to crack down on passenger violencev
June 21, 2021MSNBC
Airlines, unions ask the attorney general to crack down on passenger violencev
14 Prime Day 2021 deals under $100
June 21, 2021MSNBC
14 Prime Day 2021 deals under $100
'Not acceptable': Obama slams GOP plan to filibuster voting rights bill
June 21, 2021MSNBC
'Not acceptable': Obama slams GOP plan to filibuster voting rights bill
The best deals from Best Buy's Prime Day sale
June 21, 2021MSNBC
The best deals from Best Buy's Prime Day sale