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A message to AFT supporters about COVID-19

If there’s one constant we wake up to every morning in 2020, it’s that these are uncertain and uneasy times.

The spread of the new coronavirus is impacting everyday life for Americans in a way not seen in generations. Many of us are working from home. Our kids are out of school. Bars, restaurants, sports stadiums, concert venues, ski resorts, casinos, and amusement parks have all shuttered. While difficult, this is for good reason, and we should all follow the recommendations of public health professionals.

None of us know how this is going to unfold over the next few months, but one thing is certain: America’s farmers and ranchers will be out in the field planting and getting ready for the 2020 harvest season. This is not without significant challenges. This year, even more than in years past, I find myself so appreciative for all our farmers do for us.

At American Farmland Trust, we’re taking COVID-19 seriously and have made a few important decisions we think you should know about.

  • As you may have heard, AFT’s 2020 National Conference scheduled for May 6-7 in Washington, D.C., has been postponed. This decision was made of an abundance of caution for the wellbeing of our guests, speakers, and staff. We plan to reschedule the conference, “Sustaining America’s Fertile Ground: The Land, the Practices, and the People,” hopefully to fall 2020. Visit the conference page for the latest updates.
  • Over the next two weeks, you may not hear from us as much as usual. Trust that the hard work continues at AFT, however, we believe that our supporters should have the opportunity to focus on taking care of themselves and their families instead of cleaning out their inboxes. We’re here if you need us though!
  • As the leader of AFT, I want you to know that the safety and wellness of our employees, partners, and families are of the utmost importance to me. Over the past year, we’ve made significant investments in our technological capacity at AFT to allow all staff members the opportunity to work from home when needed. This is paying dividends now. Our work continues but our employees are safe.
  • While our national conference may be postponed, we are moving forward with the launch of “Farms Under Threat: The State of the States” on May 6 at 11 a.m. EDT. We are planning a full range of launch activities throughout the later morning and early afternoon, and we will release more specific details in the next few weeks. Sign-up for the latest updates.

I hope that you and your family are staying safe. If you’re a farmer, rancher, or farmworker, thank you for all the hard work you do to help keep Americans safe, happy, and fed. We appreciate you.

About the Author
John Piotti

President and Chief Executive Officer

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