Farm Workers in Western Canada

Bill 6, the government of Alberta’s contentious farm workers’ safety legislation, sparked public debate as no other legislation has done in recent years. The Enhanced Protection for Farm and Ranch Workers Act provides a right to work safely and a compensation system for those killed or injured at work, similar to other provinces.

In nine essays, contributors to Farm Workers in Western Canada place this legislation in context. They look at the origins, work conditions, and precarious lives of farm workers in terms of larger historical forces such as colonialism, land rights, and racism. They also examine how the rights and privileges of farm workers, including seasonal and temporary foreign workers, conflict with those of their employers, and reveal the barriers many face by being excluded from most statutory employment laws, sometimes in violation of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Contributors: Gianna Argento, Bob Barnetson, Michael J. Broadway, Jill Bucklaschuk, Delna Contractor, Darlene A. Dunlop, Brynna Hambly (Takasugi), Zane Hamm, Paul Kennett, Jennifer Koshan, C.F. Andrew Lau, J. Graham Martinelli, Shirley A. McDonald, Robin C. McIntyre, Nelson Medeiros, Kerry Preibisch, Heidi Rolfe, Patricia Tomic, Ricardo Trumper, and Kay Elizabeth Turner.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
Front cover 1
Title page 4
Copyright page 5
Dedication 6
Epigraph 8
Contents 10
Acknowledgements | McDonald 12
Introduction | Barnetspn & McDonald 14
1 Capitalist Farms, Vulnerable Workers | Barnetson 26
2 The Personal Experiences of an Alberta Farm Worker and Activist | Dunlop with McDonald 56
3 Georgic Themes and Myths of Entitlement in the Life Writing of Prairie Settlers | McDonald 78
4 Cows, Meat, People | Broadway 106
5 A Temporary Program for Permanent Gains | Bucklaschuk 126
6 Working Away | Hamm 146
7 Farming the Constitution | Koshan et al. 164
8 BC-Grown | Preibisch 192
9 Labouring in the “Four-Season Paradise” | Tomic and Trumper 212
Contributors 232
Index 238
Other Titles from The University of Alberta Press 257