Published February 28, 2014
When hundreds of thousands of American men went to combat during World War II, they left behind a labor shortage on farms and factories. One answer to the shortage was the 1942 Emergency Farm Labor Supply Program, an agreement between the United States and Mexico more commonly known as the Bracero program. It allowed 4.5 million Mexicans to work in the U.S. over the program's 22-year existence. As VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports, the benefits and pitfalls are now part of a travelling Smithsonian exhibit that comes as some U.S. lawmakers consider a new Bracero worker program as part of immigration reform.