OHS Canada Magazine

Third migrant worker in Ontario dies amid COVID-19 farm outbreaks

Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit says farm has 199 infected temporary foreign workers


June 22, 2020
By The Canadian Press
The Canadian Press
Categories
Health & Safety

SIMCOE, Ont. — A third migrant worker in Ontario with COVID-19 has died.

The Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit says the farm in their region currently has 199 infected migrant workers and 18 other people associated with the farm who tested positive for COVID-19.

Kristal Chopp, chair of the board of health, says it’s an “absolute tragedy” that someone who comes to Canada to work in the agricultural industry and support his family back home lost his life so far from his loved ones.

Two other migrant workers have died due to COVID-19 in the Windsor region since the start of the pandemic.

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Approximately 20,000 migrant workers come to Ontario each year to work on farms and in greenhouses — many of them from Mexico, Guatemala and the Caribbean — and this year were required to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival.

Windsor-Essex is one of the only three regions of Ontario — including Toronto and Peel — that are still in Stage 1 of the province’s reopening plan, and Premier Doug Ford is expected to announce today whether they can proceed to Stage 2.