Just before Fathers’ Day, on June 20, Juan López Chaparro was the third migrant farmworker to die of COVID-19, leaving behind a wife and four children. At Scotlynn Growers, the farm where he worked, at least 199 other workers have tested positive for the virus, and the number of infected workers has risen by the hundreds across Canadian farms. Let’s put an end to these preventable workplace outbreaks. Please join us in Toronto on Saturday, July 4 at 3:00 PM for a socially-distanced rally outside the Minister of Immigration’s office to demand Status For All!
The power to speak up against workplace outbreaks is crucial right now. But essential migrant and undocumented workers can’t speak out to defend our rights and health without getting deported. We urgently need all of us to rise up together and take urgent action to win permanent residency for migrants who do many types of essential work in our communities.
While the virus is incurable right now, the remedy for workplace outbreaks and mistreatment of migrants is immediate status for all–no exceptions! The living and working conditions that led to three tragic deaths and over 600 racialized workers now sick at 17 Canadian farms are no accident. They are the result of racist immigration laws that exclude migrants from basic rights and services. As Karen Cocq of the Migrant Workers’ Alliance for Change says in this CBC News clip, “Immediate permanent residency for migrant workers is the fastest and most effective way to be able to provide workers with the ability to protect themselves.”
It’s not complicated. All that’s needed to make it happen is political will — and all of us can help the federal government with that! Two weeks ago, migrants led thousands of workers across Canada in demanding full status for all, tuning into the Massive Digital Rally and taking action. Our voices, raised together, forced Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to promise a pathway to citizenship for farmworkers. Unfortunately, this promise of citizenship in some distant future does nothing for thousands of migrants who have temporary immigration status today. Call the Prime Minister to insist on full status for all and right now! Then join us this Saturday in Toronto or find out how you can join or organize an action in your own community.
Farmworkers, careworkers, international students, refugees and undocumented workers all need full immigration status now! All workers deserve access to healthcare and full labour protections without any more delay. If you can, join us this Saturday at 3:00 PM for a socially-distanced rally outside the Minister of Immigration’s constituency office at 511 Lawrence Ave. W. in Toronto. Solidarity is the only way workers will get through the worst injustices of this pandemic, so please share this email with your family, friends, coworkers, and neighbours!