The following updates from OFVGA and FARMS provide clarity around worker isolation, pay, and an update on arrivals.
Please be aware that Ontario’s Ministry of Health released its own guidance regarding temporary foreign workers, which can be found here. The guidance follows the federal guidance, and has been sent by the Ministry of Health to all local health units. Employers should make themselves familiar with the document, and any other requirements placed by their local health units.
Worker isolation obligations for employers
It is important that all growers are aware of their obligations as employers during the 14-day self-isolation period under the COVID-19 circumstances.
To clarify your obligations please carefully read the following:
The 14-day isolation period for workers upon arrival is absolutely essential. At the time of this update, the OFA have been advised by the federal government that workers shall not work during this isolation period. They don’t expect this to change, but if it does, they will advise employers of any changes.
- The SAWP Employment Contract stipulates that the worker is to receive payment for a minimum AVERAGE of 40 hours per week OVER THE TERM OF EMPLOYMENT. This means that when the worker’s term of employment is complete, the employer must make sure they have been paid an average of 40 hours per week from the start date of employment to the end date. This calculation needs to include the 14 day isolation period.
- This is what is meant by “going by the SAWP contract”.
- Other TFW Program obligations: Workers employed under the Ag Stream Low Skill and Low Wage programs must be paid a minimum of 30 hours per week during the 14 day self-isolation period.
FARMS flight arrival information
Approval was received from the Mexican Government officials that farm workers will be travelling, as soon as measures are in place to complete the process of contacting workers. CanAg Travel will be advising employers directly as flights are finalized.
The first flight arrived from Jamaica with subsequent flights scheduled for Friday and Sunday of this week. FARMS apologizes for short notices about flight arrivals given to employers.