Migrant Workers’ Centre presents Labour Trafficking Workshop in Hope for first time

The workshop will help migrant workers, service providers address issues surrounding exploitation

A Vancouver-based organization is visiting Hope to present a workshop designed to better prepare foreign temporary workers, their employers, and community members at large to recognize any issues that may be related to exploitation.

“There was a news story from Ontario recently about modern day slaves, but what they were talking about was migrant workers,” said Jodie McBride, executive director of the Read Right Society, a local non-profit focused on life-long literacy for all.

“It’s fairly common, more common than most people realize, (so this workshop) is twofold: it will raise awareness for service providers and migrant workers.”

READ MORE: New rules introduced to protect B.C. foreign workers from exploitation

Created by the Migrant Workers’ Centre in Vancouver, the Labour Trafficking Workshop is hosted by the Centre’s director and a lawyer who specializes in migrant law.

“It’s not easy to move to a foreign country. It’s especially hard to navigate when you don’t know the language, the culture, and the laws, and it’s easy to be taken down the wrong path when you don’t know better,” explained McBride.

“And unfortunately, Hope is geographically in a prime position for human trafficking because of our highways. I hear stories of things happening, and I don’t know if they’re true or not, but what we do see at Read Right are women who come to Canada (with their spouses) for a better life and it segues into domestic violence.”

To address that, the workshop will talk about what the rules are in Canada surrounding temporary workers, and addressing any cultural beliefs that may create misunderstanding. This information will also enable service providers to identify people who they suspect may be being exploited.

“A service provider like a health unit or local business may hear (or see) things” that may make them suspect a migrant worker is in danger. “They can respond right away, knowing how to remove the worker from the situation (if possible), and referring them to the right people so they can get the help they need.”

READ MORE: High demand – A look into how undocumented foreign workers fill B.C.’s construction jobs

Regardless of their nationality, people need to “know what their rights are … and they need to have the tools” to ensure they’re not taken advantage of.

Open to the public, McBride says this workshop, which is a first for Hope and free to attend, would be beneficial to anyone living in the area because Hope has a large group of migrant workers.

“It’s not just agriculture workers. Migrant workers also includes temporary foreign workers who come to work in our service industry, and as live-in caregivers. Annually, we have about 40 newcomers that we work with at Read Right. Not all are migrant workers, but many are, and (the others are typically) their spouses or women who’ve married a Canadian.”

Starting at 11:30 a.m., and lasting about an hour, the Labour Trafficking Workshop takes place on February 26, inside the Fraser Canyon Hospital’s conference room. Light refreshments will be served.

To attend, please RSVP to Jodi McBride by emailing her at Jodi@ReadRightSociety.com, or calling 604-860-0510.

To learn more about the Read Right Society, please visit their website at ReadRightSociety.com. To learn more about the Migrant Workers’ Centre, please visit their website at MWCBC.ca.


@SarahGawdin on Twitter
SarahGawdin on Instagram
Sarah.Gawdin@HopeStandard.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Local Liberal MP Jati Sidhu says he forgives Trudeau for brownface photos

Sidhu says Trudeau ‘didn’t know any better’ and that photos will prompt discussion

Local Liberal candidate says ad showing him with Abbotsford police officer was ‘not acceptable’

Jati Sidhu said advertisement only appeared for 30 minutes and was created by Montreal company

Prospera and Westminster credit unions approved for proposed merger

Abbotsford- and Surrey-based companies now take matter to membership vote

Pay raise hike closer to reality for Fraser Cascade trustees

Remuneration will more than double if change adopted

‘I just can’t believe it’: Agassiz swimmer brings home six medals from seniors games

Patti Komar won three gold and three silver medals in her first competition in 48 years

VIDEO: B.C.’s famous cat Grandpa Mason has died

The story of the feral cat that started fostering kittens touched people around the world

Trudeau seeks meeting with Singh to apologize for blackface, brownface photos

‘I will be apologizing to him personally as a racialized Canadian,’ Trudeau said Friday

Charges stayed against Alberta RCMP officer in alleged off-duty Whistler assault

Const. Vernon Hagen instead completed an alternative measures program

Indian teachers that inspired Super 30 movie talk about hope

Movie is based on international best-selling book by B.C. doctor

Abbotsford erases skate park graffiti mural honouring student killed in car crash

Many in community angry at city’s move after saying art wouldn’t be immediately removed

VIDEO: Fire destroys Williams Lake strip club targeted by past arson attempts

Diamonds and Dust Entertainment Lounge destroyed by fire, as well as New World Tea and Coffee House

Second bat found at Greater Victoria elementary school tests positive for rabies

Island Health confirms second rabies case, this time in Saanich

B.C. man guilty of first-degree murder in Yukon killing

Edward James Penner, 22, was given the mandatory life sentence for the 2017 slaying of 25-year-old Adam Cormack

Woman stabbed at least five times in Nelson during random attack

Victim is in hospital, suspect is in police custody

Most Read