fiera foods deaths

Toronto has had enough of the bakery where workers keep dying

When tragedy strikes for a fifth time, something must be done. 

That's how many are feeling in the wake of the fifth death at Fiera Foods, a North York industrial bakery that supplies retailers such as Sobey's and Dunkin Donuts. 

Less than a week ago, a temp worker was crushed and killed by a machine that turned on while he was cleaning it.

Five temps have died from workplace accidents at this factory or one of its affiliates since 1999, and The Ministry of Labour is now investigating.

Yesterday, Workers’ Action Centre and Jane Finch Action Against Poverty organized a community protest outside the factory, and there's now a Go Fund Me campaign to raise money for the funeral.   

About 100 labour advocates, union organizers, and legal clinics rallied to demand justice for those who died preventable deaths. 

"We’re filled with heartbreak and rage, because we know this death could have been prevented," Navi Aujla, a former temp worker and organizer with the Workers’ Action Centre, said in a statement.

"All five workers who were killed at Fiera since 1999 were temp agency workers, and this is no coincidence."

Protesters and critics are calling on the Ontario government to enact better legal protections for workers, and they're also demanding that Fiera Foods be investigated for criminal negligence causing death under Canada’s Criminal Code.

In Ontario, the cost of injuries to temp workers gets charged to the temp agencies, not to the companies that hire and employ them.

And though a measure was introduced by the previous Liberal government to fix this, the Ford government has yet to implement Schedule 5 of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act which would protect more temp agency workers from getting hurt.

Instead, under the Ford government, things have actually gotten worse.

Since taking office, the PC government has lowered fines for employers who break the law and allowed temp agency workers to be paid less than their coworkers.

"Proud to be standing with the Labour community remembering the workers killed at Fiera Food. No one should lose their life at work," one of the protesters wrote on Twitter

"We need to stand up for all workers in this city, especially those who do not have the ability to speak up for themselves."

Lead photo by

Workers Health & Safety Centre


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