Hispanic farmers may file discrimination claims

Published On: Mar 04 2013 08:17:39 AM PST

Hispanic and women ranchers and farmers who believe the U.S. Department of Agriculture discriminated against them have until March 25 to file claims with the agency.

The Columbia Basin Herald reports the claims process is a voluntary alternative to lawsuits from Hispanics and women who can prove the USDA discriminated in loans between 1981 and 2001.

The program will provide at least $1.3 billion in cash awards and tax relief payments and up to $160 million in farm debt relief to those eligible.