The UC Merced Community and Labor Center conducts research and education on issues of community, labor and employment, in the San Joaquin Valley and beyond. As a public institution, the center partners with valley organizations serving low-wage workers and residents. The center builds civic capacity and informs policy development in one of the nation's most economically and environmentally challenged regions.
The center is the largest labor center serving a rural region in the US. It has four major areas of expertise: rural work, workplace health and safety, immigrant rights and the safety net, and high road economic development.
The center's projects have been funded by a variety of state agencies and philanthropic foundations. These include the Farmworker Health Study, California COVID-19 Workplace Outreach Project, Kern High Road Training Partnership, and Spotlight on Migration.