The Fresno Bee ran a feature story and editorialized in support of a UC Davis farmworker health study in the San Joaquin Valley called MICASA. MICASA is the acronym for "Mexican Immigration to California: Agricultural Safety and Acculturation," and, cleverly, also means "my house" in Spanish.
The project studies on-the-job hazards and health risks for farmworkers, their muscular and skeletal problems and their adjustment to American culture, according to the story. The researchers interviewed about 875 people -- 422 farmworker families and about 40 male farm laborers -- and conducted community forums on topics such as diabetes, alcohol and drug abuse, domestic violence and breast cancer.
"A large, well-funded study like ours will be read by those who have the power to make changes -- politicians, policy-makers, health professionals and so forth," the story quoted Maria Stoecklin-Marois, a UC Davis staff research associate.
In the paper's opinion section, the editors said they welcome UC Davis' efforts "to help strengthen this neglected segment of our work force, and look forward to using the forthcoming data to enhance life in the Valley."