Featured Reviews of "Farm Workers in Western Canada"

“The book’s subtitle — Injustices and Activism — captures the two main themes it explores: thehorrible exploitation that many farm workers endure, and the efforts they and their supporters have made to organize for reforms. This book represents a compelling argument that those of us who depend on the life-supporting work done by Canadians and temporary foreign workers on Canadian farms ought to support their efforts to unionize and their insistence that existing safety regulations should be enforced more aggressively.” [Full article] Tom Sandborn, Vancouver Sun

“Am currently reading Farm Workers in Western Canada: Injustices and Activism and am absolutely convinced that the Farm Safety Enhancement Bill was the morally right decision to provide safety, protection and compensation for farm families and workers… In time Bill 6 may become recognized as one of [Alberta’s] best, progressive pieces of legislation.” Bruce Hinkley, Wetaskiwin-Camrose MLA, Wetaskiwin Times

“The nine essays in this volume show how dynamics such as global agribusiness concentration have made meat processors and farm workers vulnerable to low-wage, unhealthy and dangerous jobs. This timely book thus underscores why legislated worker rights are crucial… Interspersed throughout the book are first-hand accounts from the pesticide applicators and carcass disassembly lines. Candid stories from Alberta farm worker Darlene Dunlop’s 15 years of activism are particularly memorable…. Several chapters on migrant workers in BC, Manitoba and Alberta powerfully illuminate the barriers faced by racialized, non-citizen workers in exercising their rights… While the struggle for justice in Canadian fields and factories is unfinished, this book reminds us of workers’ perseverance despite grinding indignity.” Anelyse Weiler, Alberta Views

“One of the greatest strengths of this book is its emphasis on unsettling a series of longstanding myths about agriculture in western Canada…. In the second half of the book, the contributors continue to explore the role of government policies and racialization in other agricultural sectors and provinces… A particular strength of the book is its focus on understanding the hierarchical, classed, and racialized nature of farm labour…” [Full review] Rachel Herron, Labour/Le Travail

“Readers interested in examining the topic of agricultural labor on the northern Great Plains will find Farm Workers in Western Canada to be particularly valuable…. Readers who desire a multidisciplinary approach to the topic will be especially satisfied. The book’s contributors represent a diverse variety of areas of expertise including sociologists, labor relations specialists, and legal professionals. These authors employ a variety of approaches while examining the contested farm labor issue across the diverse landscapes of western Canada…. Editors Shirley A. McDonald and Bob Barnetson have succeeded greatly in assembling a collection of essays that provide fresh insights in understanding the plight of those who work in hazardous conditions to provide food for an ever-growing global population.” [Full review at https://muse.jhu.edu/article/690178]

Derek S. Oden, Great Plains Research