North Dakota Farmers Union members, Shane and Jana Sickler, Dunn County, joined 320 farmers, ranchers and fishermen from across the country in Washington D.C., September 11-13, 2017 for the National Farmers Union Fall Legislative Fly-In. The annual event allows Farmers Union members to meet directly with lawmakers, USDA leaders and other administration officials to discuss issues important to family farmers and ranchers.
It is important for Farmers Union members to meet with lawmakers and share their personal stories of how food and farm policy affects their livelihoods. As a farmer-led organization, grassroots advocacy and education are a big part of Farmers Union.
NFU Fly-In provides an opportunity for members to meet these lawmakers and build relationships. ND members advocate for legislative priorities that will affect their operations and communities, including: Farm Bill programs and the farm safety net, access to affordable and quality health care and the expanded use of ethanol and advanced biofuels, including E30.
In addition, Farmers Union members attended a briefing at the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Anne Hazlett, National Resources Conservation Service Acting Chief Leonard Jordan and National Agricultural Statistics Service Administrator Hubert Hamer spoke to the group.
“The Farmers Union Fly-In is an important part of NFU’s ongoing grassroots advocacy efforts,” said NFU President Roger Johnson. “Family farmers and ranchers are the best advocates we have for agriculture, and the NFU Fly-In is often the best opportunity for our members to advocate. This event makes a major statement to members of Congress and the administration that farm country wants to see better support and policies from their representatives in Washington