Migrant Labour, “Unfree Labour” and Resistance

Sab-Banner-croppedThis panel, featuring leading scholar-activists in the field, explores Canada’s temporary foreign worker programs, the role of law in constructing migrant worker insecurity, and the forms of migrant worker organizing that have emerged in response.

Aziz Choudry | Building migrant and immigrant worker resistance against temporary agency exploitation in Montreal

Aziz Choudry is Assistant Professor, International Education in the Department of Integrated Studies in Education, Faculty of Education, at McGill University. He is author of NGOization: Complicity, Contradictions and Prospects (Zed), Organize! Building from the local for global justice (Between the Lines), Learning from the Ground Up: Global Perspectives on Social Movements and Knowledge Production (Macmillan), and Fight Back: Workplace Justice for Immigrants (Fernwood). He is also the North America Regional Representative on the Research Committee on Labour Movements (RC44) of the International Sociological Association.

Audio | Aziz Choudry


Adrian Smith | Unfree-ing Migrant Labour: Canada’s Next Top Model

Adrian Smith teaches in the Department of Law and Legal Studies and in the Institute of Political Economy at Carleton University and is a member of Justicia For Migrant Workers.  He is an editorial member of Studies in Political Economy and the book review editor of Socialist Studies.

Audio | Adrian Smith


Fay Faraday | Law and the Construction of Migrant Workers Insecurity

Fay Faraday is a lawyer with an independent social justice practice in Toronto.  She represents unions, community organizations and coalitions in constitutional litigation, human rights and labour.  She has represented clients in constitutional litigation at all levels of court, including numerous cases at the Supreme Court of Canada.  She also works collaboratively with community organizations and coalitions on strategic and policy advice.  Fay holds an Innovation Fellowship with the Metcalf Foundation where she is engaged in legal and community-based research addressing the rights of migrant workers.  Her report Made in Canada: How the Law Constructs Migrant Workers’ Insecurity was published in September 2012.  Fay is also a Visiting Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School.  Beginning in July 2014, Fay will be the Visiting Packer Chair in Social Justice at York University.

Audio | Fay Faraday


Sonia Singh | Critical Questions: Building Worker Power and a Vision of Organizing in Ontario

Sonia Singh is an organizer with the Workers’ Action Centre (WAC), a worker-based organization committed to improving the lives and working conditions of people in low-wage and unstable employment. WAC brings workers together to to fight for fair employment and to provide leadership in our struggle for fairness and dignity at work. Sonia is also a member of Justice for Migrant Workers, a collective which supports outreach and organizing with migrant agricultural workers.

Audio | Sonia Singh


Discussant | Geraldina Polanco, Postdoctoral Fellow, York University

Audio | Geraldina Polanco


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