Do you work in Ontario for less than $16.55/hr? Your wages are going up!

Over 1 million workers in Ontario will see a wage boost on October 1, 2023.

Here are 3 things you need to know:

1. Wages are going up because workers fought and won!

In 2014, Ontario workers pushed for a law that ties wages to rising prices (inflation). Higher wages do not cause inflation. But because workers took action to tie minimum wage to cost of living increases, wages are going up. When we fight, we win!

What else can we win together?

2. Even if you make more than minimum wage, your wage will go up.

Every worker in Ontario making less than $16.55/hr before October 1 will get a wage raise, because workers like you pushed for changes and won! Check your paystub for your hourly rate, and make sure that you get paid $16.55/hr for all hours worked on and after October 1, 2023.

If your boss is stealing your wages, contact us for support!

Migrant Care Workers: 416-897-4388
Migrant Healthcare Workers (refugee & undocumented): 647-782-6633
Migrant Student Workers:  647-858-2854
Migrant Fishery Workers: 506-251-7467
Migrant Farm Workers (ENG):  905-324-2840
Trabajador@s Agrícolas (ESP):  647-807-4722

3. $16.55/hr is not enough!

We know minimum wage is not enough to live on – we need better wages to pay for rent, groceries, medical costs, school, and other essentials. Some workers are even excluded from the right to minimum wage. You and your co-workers deserve more!

Join us to fight for better wages and labour rights for yourself and others. To learn more, message an organizer from Migrant Workers Alliance for Change today:

Migrant Care Workers: 416-897-4388
Migrant Healthcare Workers (refugee & undocumented): 647-782-6633
Migrant Student Workers:  647-858-2854
Migrant Fishery Workers: 506-251-7467
Migrant Farm Workers (ENG):  905-324-2840
Trabajador@s Agrícolas (ESP):  647-807-4722

Celebrate grape and wine season by thanking a migrant vineyard worker!

Before a bottle of wine reaches you at the store or a glass of wine is set on your table at a restaurant, the grapes are grown, harvested, and processed by migrant vineyards workers from Mexico, Vietnam, and Caribbean countries.

We are separated from our families for over half a year and miss out on family birthdays, graduations, and funerals. It’s heartbreaking to be away for so long and the days can seem never ending. Your support during the season encourages us to keep pushing through. We want to hear from you!

Get the Facts: Family Open Work Permits for Farmworkers

You deserve to be together with your family – all migrants do! Sadly, the Canadian government keeps us separated by denying us permanent resident status. One way the government promises to unite migrant families is through measures like open work permits for family members.

What is the Family Open Work Permit?

For years, migrant workers like you have been speaking up and taking action together about family unity. In 2022 the Canadian government was pressured to allow more spouses and adult children dependents of some migrant workers to get open work permits in the country. (Read the government announcement here.)

This expanded government measure has 3 phases:

  1. Phase 1 started January 30, 2023 which is for family members of workers in the high-wage stream of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program or the International Mobility Program. Farm workers are excluded.
  2. Phase 2 will expand to family members of workers from the low-wage stream of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, after consultations with bosses. This phase will still exclude farm workers.
  3. Phase 3 is consultations with bosses in the agricultural industry to see if including family members of farm workers will benefit them and their business. It is not guaranteed that farm workers will be included after the consultations.

You can see how farm workers are shut out at every phase, this isn’t fair! That’s why we’re uniting together to take action and win change to the unfair system. Join us: Send a WhatsApp message to 905-324-2840 for more information about how you can make a change with us.

Who can apply?

  • Family members of workers in high-wage streams of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program or the International Mobility Program

Not sure if your job qualifies as high-wage? You must be earning what’s called the “median hourly wage” or higher, which depends on what province in Canada you work.

Current wages for farmworkers in Canada are as low as $13/hour and we deserve so much more! That’s why we’re also fighting for higher wages, so our families will have more opportunities.

Do you agree that your family deserves more? Send a WhatsApp message to us at 905-324-2840 to learn how you can join our fight to win a better life!

Who cannot apply?

  • Farm workers in the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program and the Agricultural Stream (Ag-Stream) of the Temporary Foreign Workers Program
  • Fishery workers who are not in the high-wage stream
  • Any migrant worker in the Temporary Foreign Worker Program who is paid low wages
  • Migrants with Open Work Permits for Vulnerable Workers who are paid low wages
  • Migrants with work permits who are also refugee claimants or H&C applicants
  • Migrants without papers/immigration status

To read the full requirements, tap this link:

So many people are shut out of this measure, it’s not fair.

That’s why migrant workers are uniting together to take action and win change, including permanent resident status for all, so that we can all be together with our families!

Migrant farmworkers: You have a voice, let’s get loud for status for all!

Take action using this form and let Prime Minister Justin Trudeau know that the world is watching! Let’s unite together and make sure Canada does the right thing and grants permanent status for all – including people without papers and those who arrive in the future.

Your message will only be sent once you hit the red “ADD YOUR NAME” button at the end.

Note: Your name and contact information will be kept confidential. This form is created by Migrant Workers Alliance for Change, a migrant-led worker rights organization whose leaders and members are migrant farmworkers, care workers, international student workers, and undocumented workers. Learn more about us by tapping the link here:

Migrant food and farm workers support Metro workers on strike!

Last year alone, Canada’s 3 largest grocery stores took $3.6 billion in profit. That money belongs to workers, including migrants like you – people who grow, harvest, transport, and sell food. Right now nearly 4,000 workers at Metro (which also owns Food Basics) are striking for better wages & work hours and job security – things that all of us deserve! Sign below to show your support for workers taking action to win a better life for all of us.

Seasonal Farmworkers: Do you know your rights?

If you’re a seasonal migrant farmworker in Canada, it can be difficult and confusing to learn about your rights. This guide will help you and if you have any questions about your rights, send a WhatsApp message to 905-324-2840 with your issue and location.

As you read through this guide, you may see that you don’t have as many rights as you were promised. Farmworkers are excluded from many basic labour rights that workers in Canada have fought for and won. It’s not fair! Everybody deserves equal rights, fair treatment & wages, and safer workplaces. That’s why farmworkers like you are uniting together with other migrant workers to take action and win a better life for you and your family!

What are your rights and where can you find them?

For seasonal agricultural workers, there are 3 main places where you can read about your rights:

  1. Your contract (Federal)
  2. Labour laws (provincial)
  3. Housing guidelines (provincial + municipal)

Your contract gives you rights

If you came to Canada under the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program through your home country’s Ministry of Labour, you have a contract that both you and your employer have signed. It’s your right to know what’s in your contract and to have your own copy. If you don’t have a copy of your contract, let us know. [Tap this link to view an online version.]

Here are some of your rights according to your contract:

  1. Clean, adequate living conditions (Section 2, Part A, #1);
  2. Access to adequate washing machines; or free transportation to a laundry facility (Section 2, Part A, #2);
  3. 1 meal break of at least 30 minutes after 5 consecutive hours of work, and 2 rest periods (10 mins each) in mid-morning and mid-afternoon (Section 2, Part C, #13);
  4. 1 day of rest after working 6 days in a row; if not possible, your boss must ask your permission to delay your day off to a later date (Section 2, Part C, #14);
  5. After working for the same boss for 5 years in a row, you are entitled to a recognition payment of $4.22/week for a maximum of $135, payable at the end of your contract (Section 3, #4);
  6. Health coverage (Section 6);
  7. Safety training and protective equipment at no cost to you (Section 9, #5);
  8. Free transportation to do your shopping once per week (Section 9, #7).

Labour laws give you rights

Canada has 10 provinces and 3 territories. Workers on the seasonal farmwork program mainly work in the provinces of BC, Ontario, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia. The Canadian government is responsible for things like your work permit, contract, and other immigration-related matters, and the provincial government in the province where you work determines things like your labour rights. That means your rights may be different depending on what province you work in.

Farmworkers are generally excluded from basic labour standards – including the right to overtime pay and holidays & holiday pay. In Ontario, farmworkers are excluded from maximum hours of work and time off in between shifts. This is unacceptable! Reach out to us today to learn how farmworkers like you are pushing back against unfair labour laws.

Here are 3 of your rights under provincial labour law (Ontario):

  1. The right to work free from harassment and abuse (from your boss, supervisor, or coworkers);
  2. The right to regular payment of wages;
  3. The right to equal pay for equal work (your boss cannot discriminate against you and pay you less than somebody else on the farm for doing the same work)

[Tap this link to read more from the Ontario Ministry of Labour website]

If you are being treated unfairly at work or not being paid properly, message us on WhatsApp at 905-324-2840 for support.

Housing Guidelines Give You Rights

Like the labour laws, housing guidelines may be different depending on which province you live in and work. Your contract guarantees you the right to “clean, adequate living conditions”, and the housing guidelines go into more detail about what the government thinks that means.

These housing guidelines are used by the Public Health department in your area to inspect the bunkhouse and pass it. If you’re not sure where to find the housing guidelines, message us on WhatsApp with your postal code (a combination of letters and numbers that will be on your paystub or workplace address).

Using Ontario guidelines as an example, here are some of your rights:

  1. Safe, clean housing free from rodents;
  2. Clean blankets, sheets and pillow cases must be provided by your boss;
  3. Safe water supply for drinking, washing, and cooking;
  4. Employer must provide kitchenware (utensils, plates, bowls, etc), cookware (pots & pans), and cooking utensils

[Tap this link to view an online version of the housing guidelines in Ontario.]

Send us a message on WhatsApp at 905-324-2840 and we can walk through the checklist with you, or visit the farm at your request.

You Deserve More, Let’s Unite to Win!

As you can see, these options are not good enough. You deserve the power to protect yourself and fight for equal rights. That’s why migrant farmworkers like you and other migrant workers are uniting together to fight for permanent resident status for all. Without permanent status, the boss can threaten you with being fired, losing your housing, getting sent home, and being blacklisted from the farmwork program. Enough is enough!

On September 17, migrants and our supporters are taking to the streets across Canada to win permanent status for all, including people without papers. Invite your friends and family in Canada to take action with us by sending them this link: United we are stronger!

Care for Wayne Fundraiser

Wayne is a Migrant Workers Alliance for Change member leader from Jamaica who was blacklisted from the farm work program for speaking up about unpaid wages. He is a young father of two and has been providing for his family by driving taxi, but is now facing unexpected expenses after his dad passed away following father’s day. We are asking for community support to help with burial and funeral costs. Extra funds will be used to pay school fees for Wayne’s children.

TAKE ACTION: Donate using the form above, then join the movement to win equal rights for 1.7 million people like Wayne!

Current + Former Farmworkers: MAY WI TALLAWAH

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his government are *finally* discussing status and equal rights for undocumented migrants (regularization), including former farmworkers, this month. We are close to winning equal rights, but we can’t cross the finish line without YOU!

Here are some action options – what are YOU willing to do to win? Choose an action below and invite a friend to join you!

In-person actions

Alternative actions

  • 3. Sign the petition at and ask a friend to do the same. Post the link regularly on Facebook or share on WhatsApp to remind your friends to sign and share. For every person who adds their name, an email is automatically sent to the Cabinet Ministers.
  • 4. Call Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at 613-992-4211 and leave a message telling him to support an inclusive program to give permanent resident status to all undocumented people with no caps or exclusion. Tap here for script. Ask a friend to call with you!
  • 6. Outside of Canada and can’t make a call? Record a video or voice note, or take a photo, asking Cabinet Ministers to do the right thing. Use the same script as the phone calls. Send your video, audio, or photo on WhatsApp to 905-324-2840.
  • 7. Do you have an idea for an action not listed? Share it with your organizer on WhatsApp at 905-324-2840 or through email at

We have just a few weeks to make sure each of the Cabinet Ministers hear from thousands of us, so that they are pressured to do the right thing. Let’s go!

Upcoming farmworker meetings

  • May 7, 4-6pm – Vineyard workers organizing meeting
  • May 10, 8pm Toronto time/7pm Jamaica time – Monthly members meeting for current & former farmworkers
    • Not a member yet? Take an action above and WhatsApp “JOIN MWAC” to 905-324-2840 to learn more about our membership process.