:we need community support, please forward widely…
Justicia for Migrant Workers (J4MW) is asking for court support this Tuesday March 25th, 2014 regarding migrant workers access to healthcare. This hearing will take place at Osgoode Hall [130 Queen Street West- closest main intersection is University Ave & Queen in Toronto] from 10:00am-1:00pm in courtroom #3
The provincial government is appealing a recent decision by the Health Services Appeal and Review board to extend OHIP to two injured migrant workers. The review board and a subsequent reconsideration panel ruled that the two migrant workers are eligible to access medical care under Ontario’s health care system.
On August 9th, 2012 Kenroy Williams and Denville Clarke were among nine Jamaican migrant workers who were driving to work when their employer’s van swerved to avoid an oncoming car. The van rolled several times killing one passenger and severely injuring several others. Their employer attempted to return both Mr. Williams and Mr. Clarke to Jamaica after the accident despite their serious medical conditions and before they could receive adequate healthcare. Family members, the Industrial Accident Victims Group of Ontario and activists with Justicia for Migrant Workers intervened to help the workers remain in Ontario for their desperately needed medical treatment.
Both Mr. Williams and Mr. Clarke were employed under the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program (SAWP). As with all SAWP workers, Mr. Williams’ and Mr. Clarke’s OHIP coverage expired at the end of the farming season, even though they both remained seriously injured and in need of healthcare in Ontario.
The pair won their landmark appeal, which allowed them to receive extended healthcare in Ontario, at the Health Services Appeal and Review Board on August 16, 2013. The Ontario government challenged the ruling and, as a result, the Appeal Board reconsidered and affirmed the decision on September 26, 2013.
Please click on the links below to see media coverage and previous legal decisions on this issue.
Province Challenges OHIP coverage to injured migrant workers
Injured farm workers could lose OHIP http://thecaribbeancamera.com/?p=1691
Migrant workers win healthcare extension http://www.ohscanada.com/news/ontario-migrant-workers-win-healthcare-extension/1002665473/?&er=NA
Injured migrant farm workers win back OHIP http://www.thestar.com/news/immigration/2013/10/07/injured_migrant_farm_workers_win_back_ohip.html
Government aims to deny injured seasonal workers health carehttp://sharenews.com/govt-aims-to-deny-injured-seasonal-workers-health-care/
Denying health coverage to injured migrant workers is shamefulhttp://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2013/09/18/denying_health_coverage_to_injured_migrant_workers_is_shameful.html