OPSEU Disability Rights Caucus has joined the Power of Many Campaign, supported by the Ontario Federation of Labour, in the call to draw attention to the plight of migrant workers, namely for their inclusion in labour and employment rights legislation, both provincially and nationally.
Calls for full and permanent immigration status for migrant workers are similarly included. The Disability Rights Caucus recognizes that because federal immigration laws bound migrant workers to a single employer, refusing unsafe work or unsafe housing results in termination, homelessness and deportation. Further, Ontario Labour Laws exclude migrant workers from minimum wage or joining Unions.
This past June, 164 migrant workers had tested positive for COVID-19 in one Ontario farm alone. By August three workers died in COVID related outbreaks, in the agriculture sector, while trying to grow and bring food to our tables.
Their language barriers, status and vulnerability exacerbate their fears and isolation.
Because they don’t have permanent residence, they are precluded from accessing universal health care or emergency income support.
The Disability Rights Caucus supports the OFL call for change, has signed the petition of such, and encourages members to email their MPs to further calls for action.