In an interview, a farm worker from Saint Vincent and the Grenadines as part of the OECS Farm Workers programme has told us that “things are rough at the moment but I wasn’t expecting a bed of roses”.
He confirmed that the issues such as poor accommodation, sanitation, discrimination and general poor working environment have been normalised across most the farms.
This is his 4th time travelling to Canada to take part in the seasonal programme. This has not broken the young male in his twenties who reached out to us. He says that he will continue to go back once given the opportunity.
However, with COVID-19 having an impact on global demand for some of the farm fresh produce, supply chains have been disrupted making it difficult for produce to be sold.
“They keep returning the [fruit name not stated so as not to identify the farm] so the barn is packed, no need to pick more”
“I have not worked for over a week now and hoping that something happens so I can continue work to make the money to go back home later this year”.
“I am [kinda] stressing about that as I still have to buy my little groceries and look after myself”.
“I actually enjoy farming, that’s why I come every year. I could make good money here even though they treat you like less than because of your skin colour”.
“I know it’s just for six months so I bear with it”. (BFN)