News

Farm workers appeal ruling

Three Indo-Canadian farm workers who were part of an employment insurance fraud court case are appealing the ruling.

The decision handed down last month exposed systematic exploitation of workers by their contractor bosses and required about half of the 75 workers involved to repay benefits.

The Federal Court judge found workers were often required by their employer to repay some of their wages in order to get a falsified record of employment that would then entitle them to EI.

Swaran Singh Bains, 79, of Vancouver and his two daughters, both of whom have cognitive disabilities, are the three pickers appealing the ruling.

Although the three were largely cleared by the ruling, the judge refused to count as insurable earnings the wages the Bains family repaid to contractor S & S Harvesting Ltd. to get their records of employment.

Lawyer Sarah Khan, of the B.C. Public Interest Advocacy Centre, hopes to reverse that longstanding practice in the industry.

“We don’t think an employer or the federal EI system should be able to benefit from illegal demands from an employee for payment for records of employment,” she said.

“They shouldn’t have to pay for something they’re legally entitled to.”

The judge warned fraudulent practices in the farm contracting business continue.

jnagel@surreyleader.com

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

Charges laid in fatal Surrey stabbing
 
Surrey flooding minor, if at all–Delta watching areas of concern.
 
Delta trustees approve school budget
Eviction deadline looms for homeless South Surrey couple
 
Dog with four-pound tumour gets life-changing surgery in Chilliwack
 
‘Iconic’ White Rock artist to be featured in calendar
Organic recycling exemption eyed for Metro Vancouver apartments
 
Police blitz highlights jaywalking dangers
 
Border seizures net guns, drugs, cash

Community Events, October 2014

Add an Event

Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Oct 30 edition online now. Browse the archives.