Erika and Jesus, two migrant agricultural workers from Mexico, were recently repatriated from a farm in Kelowna simply because they received a delivery of food and clothes.
Erika Zavala and Jesus Molina, both migrant farmworkers from Mexico, were recently fired from a B.C. farm simply because they received a delivery of cultural food and work clothes.
They are devastated after losing their income for the season. Erika and Jesus had been counting on working in Canada until October to support their children and elderly parents. The shutdown of the Mexican economy due to COVID-19 has severely reduced opportunities for jobs back home, and there is no government support. You can read more about their story in The Guardian.
We are enormously thankful to everyone who has donated so far in this GoFundMe fundraiser coordinated with our friends at RAMA Okanagan. It also means a lot to Erika and Jesus to know that so many people in Canada care about them. All funds raised go directly to Erika and Jesus.
Can you help us reach the final stretch of our fundraising goal?
If it’s within your means, we welcome donations here.
At least 164 racialized migrant workers from Mexico have tested positive for COVID-19 at Scotlynn Group’s farm in Norfolk County, Ontario. Meanwhile, the employer is offering to pay Canadian residents $25/hour to harvest asparagus. We have never heard of a migrant farmworker anywhere earning $25 an hour for their hard-earned labour.
Please take the following actions today in support of migrant justice. It won’t take long to tweet, email and/or phone right now:
1. TWEET at @scotlynnGroup. Ask, the employer:
“Will migrant farm workers also be paid $25 an hour?”
“Will you commit to not repatriating workers who are sick or injured?”
“Will you commit to paying migrant workers full wages and no deductions during their quarantine period, at the same rate you are paying Canadian residents?”
“Will you commit to rehiring all migrant labourers next year and paying the $25 they are offering this year to Canadian workers?
You can use the following hashtags: #migrantjustice #fairwagesnow #covid19 #covid19Ontario #onpoli #onlab #onlab
Feel free to CC @fordnation @montemcnaughton @marcomendicino @cquantrough and @mclaudebideau.
2. EMAIL the employer at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please CC email@example.com so we can keep track of how many emails are sent. Sample email:
I am aware that you are offering to pay $25/hour to assist with harvesting asparagus, and I am writing to inquire whether or not the migrant workers employed at your workplace will also be paid $25 an hour. Will you commit to this as well as paying the workers full wages during their quarantine? Furthermore, will you ensure that no migrant worker who is sick or injured will be repatriated, and that they will be provided full access to the Canadian healthcare system? Finally, will you commit to rehiring all workers next year if they so choose to return to Scotlynn, paying the $25 rate that you are offering to Canadian residents? I await a response from you.
3. PHONE Scotlynn Group at 1-800-263-9117 ext 2225. Phone script:
I am phoning today to ask about your job posting. Are you paying migrant farm workers $25 as well? Will you pay the workers full wages during their quarantine, and will you commit to not sending home injured and sick workers so they receive full access to our healthcare system? Finally, will you rehire all the workers next year if they choose to return? For years your farm business has relied on migrant workers, and its our hope that they will be treated with fairness and respect during this pandemic.
We are calling on supporters of Justice for Migrant Workers to please show solidarity through your material resources through the following Go Fund Me campaign: https://www.gofundme.com/helpforkevon
Kevon Smith, a migrant worker and father of five, suffered serious injuries while working on a apple farm near Simcoe, Ontario.
After his workplace injury, Kevon’s employer attempted to send him back to Trinidad and Tobago. Kevon knew this was not right, resisted and remained in Canada to access health care for his injuries and fight for workers’ compensation from the WSIB.
Kevon’s doctors told him he will likely need surgery, but WSIB still refuses to provide him the financial support that would enable him to get it.
IAVGO Community Legal Clinic is helping Kevon challenge this unfair decision, but his status as a migrant worker excludes him from accessing other forms of income support programs. This means that at the moment he is far from home, severely injured and virtually penniless.
We are asking if you can provide some financial support as soon as possible to help Kevon with living costs through this crisis. He needs the funds now and will be able to access it within days of your donation.
Kevon is the sole breadwinner for himself and his young family. This crisis has made them destitute. Your support is greatly appreciated.