Friday, May 4, 2012

Temporary foreign workers at Lakeside Packers

Alberta Views has published an interesting piece on the growing use of temporary foreign workers at the Xl Lakeside Packers plant in Brooks. The workforce at Lakeside has changed significantly over the years as various owners have sought to intensify production and cut costs. In doing so, they radically (and racially) altered the composition of the labour force. This, in turn, has caused dramatic changes in the surrounding communities.

Lakeside had a very hot labour dispute in 2005 which had significant racial dimensions. You can see a great video about the strike on the Alberta Labour History Institute website (note the language is saucy). There was also an NFB documentary 24 days in Brooks. Subsequent to this strike, Lakeside began relying increasingly on TFWs--perhaps part of a strategy to create a more docile labour force.

-- Bob Barnetson

1 comment:

  1. An interesting article in the Globe and Mail today on TFWs: