Premier Ford Calling for Migrant Worker Testing at End of Season


Ontario's Premier is calling for free COVID-19 testing for all migrant workers before they return to their home countries.

Doug Ford says, with the season coming to an end and the workers heading home, many countries will require a negative COVID-19 test before they can return.

But under current regulations, most workers won't be eligible for testing as they're not showing any symptoms of having the virus.

Ford says when farms were facing outbreaks, the majority of workers followed protocols.

"The Essex area and some of these greenhouses in Niagara and other regions as well, they're the ones that are putting food on our tables. That's the least thing we could do, help these folks out," he says.

Ford says a test so they can go home is the least we can do.

"I think they sacrificed. They came here and you notice how the numbers dropped in Windsor-Essex? Because they were following the guidelines. They were a little nervous at the beginning, but I think they deserve that to say the least," he says.

Ford says, without the workers, the 176 farms in Essex County would not have been able to handle the growing season.

"I know they got a lot of heat, the migrant workers, but keep in mind the reason we were having vegetables on our plate is because of these folks. They've helped us out," he says.

There are roughly 20,000 migrant workers across Ontario including 8,000 in Windsor-Essex.