News & Events
For migrant workers, injury often means a one-way ticket home
After Eloid Drummond was hit by a car in Exeter, Ont., and suffered a dislocated shoulder, he was declared "AWOL" by his employer -- and Canada -- because he refused to quietly go home to Jamaica.
Unable to continue farm work, he was terminated from Canada's Seasonal Agricultural Workers' Program, and hence lost his social insurance card and health coverage for his injuries.
Being labeled AWOL (absent without leave) also meant he couldn't be rehired within the program, which each year brings in 25,000 foreign farm workers from Mexico, the Caribbean and Latin America.
On Friday, after fighting repatriation ever since the May 2010 accident, Drummond, 39, will finally get badly needed surgery on his right shoulder at Humber River Regional Hospital.
Had it not been for Drummond's stubborn determination, he would have become just another number on Service Canada's AWOL list.