Middle and high school students to process lobster after temporary foreign worker ban
With lobster processing set to begin Sunday, desperate New Brunswick seafood plants are turning to high school and even middle school students to fill the gap left by temporary foreign workers.
The decision by the Higgs government to block foreign workers amid the coronavirus pandemic has left processors in the province saying they have only about half the workforce they need, while counterparts in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island are ready to go “full tilt.”
“[The province] pulled the rug from under our feet,” said Russel Jacob, owner of Westmorland Fisheries in Cap Pele…
Middle school students must have permission from their parents and will make about $13 an hour.
High school students will be paid about $15 an hour.
Jacob expects they will not perform nearly as well as the experienced foreign workers.
Here is the full story, via Eric Hendry.
My initial point of course was one about the value of immigrants. But might it also be said that a significant chunk of the rising unemployment in New Brunswick is voluntary? Admittedly not everyone is sufficiently able-bodied to perform the work, but if junior high school students can do it…that means that many of the unemployed adults are simply unwilling to take these jobs? Is one allowed to say that these days? It doesn’t have to mean the government should do nothing about the broader economic crisis.