Letter to Premier Higgs from NFU President, Katie Ward

Letter to Premier Higgs from NFU President, Katie Ward

New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs
Via email: premier@gnb.ca

Dear Premier Higgs,

Re: Immediate Need for Temporary Foreign Workers in New Brunswick

The National Farmers Union urges you to allow the entrance of Temporary Foreign Workers into the Province of
New Brunswick. In response to your announcement on April 28th, 2020 prohibiting the arrival of workers, New
Brunswick farmers have started scaling back planting and production; they simply cannot produce without skilled,
experienced labour. The result will be reduced food production making the province, its agricultural producers,
and its workers more precarious.

As identified in the April 28 press release by the NFU in New Brunswick, Agricultural Alliance of New Brunswick
and Really Local Harvest, your declaration immediately created many critical concerns including reduced
production, training required to make use of unskilled labour, and the impacts of broken contracts on labourers
and their long-term employers.

The farming season is upon us. It will not wait for novice field hands to learn skilled roles. Now is not the time to
close New Brunswick’s borders to the workers your farms were counting on.

As stated so clearly in the farm organizations’ press release: “The federal and provincial governments have moved
mountains in the last months to ensure these workers are still able to come to Canada and that precautions are
taken to ensure the safety of all.” Quarantine protocols are in place across Canada to protect everyone from
COVID and continue to provide the food that Canadians need.

We urge you to immediately reverse your decision regarding Temporary Foreign Workers and allow New
Brunswick farmers to grow to capacity this year. Canada needs them producing food – this year and beyond.

Sincerely,
Katie Ward
President
National Farmers Union

cc: Minister of Agriculture, Aquaculture and Fisheries, Ross Wetmore Ross.Wetmore@gnb.ca
Minister of Heath, Hugh J.A. (Ted) Flemming, Q.C. Hugh.Flemming@gnb.ca
Minister of Economic Development and Small Business and Opportunities NB, Mary Wilson, Mary.Wilson@gnb.ca
Leader of the Official Opposition, Denis Landry, Denis.Landry2@gnb.ca
Official Opposition: Agriculture, Aquiculture and Fisheries, Isabelle Thériault Isabelle.Theriault@gnb.ca
Official Opposition: Health JC D’Amours – Jean-Claude.D’Amours@gnb.ca
Official Opposition: Economic Development and Small Business / Opportunities NB, Andrew Harvey
Andrew.Harvey@gnb.ca

 

Download the PDF here

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