The Alberta Labour History Institute is excited to be presenting Labour Film Night at the Metro Cinema in Edmonton on November 29, 2016. We shall present two recent compelling documentaries. Migrant Dreams and The Delano Manongs: The Forgotten Heroes of the UFW. The evening will also include a panel discussion on current migrant farm worker issues in Canada and Alberta.
Migrant Dreams tells the undertold story of migrant agricultural workers struggling against Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) that treats foreign workers as modern-day indentured labourers. Local activists set up secretive meetings with member of Justice for Migrant Workers the lifeline for a group of Indonesian migrant agricultural worker who find themselves trapped in a web of lies and coerced by threats of deportation from agents and greenhouse owners. (www.migrantdreams.ca)
The Delano Manongs tells the story of farm labour organizer Larry Itliong and the Filipino farm workers who instigated the Delano Grape Strike of 1965. One of the American farm labour movement’s pivotal events, the collaboration between Filipino, Chicano and other ethnic workers lead to the creation of the United Farm Workers Union (UFW) and the rise of the famous Labour Leader Cesar Chavez. Larry Itliong’s role and that of the 1500 Filipino workers he organized is often neglected. This film corrects that omission. (www.delanomanongs.com)
The Panel presentation includes Marco Luciano, of Migrante, Michael Hughes, of the United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 1118 and Gil McGowan, of the Alberta Federation of Labour. We are also excited to be sponsoring Gabriel Allahdua, a member of Justice for Migrant Workers. Gabriel was an organizer and participant in the recent Harvesting Freedom Caravan that travelled across 20 communities in Ontario connecting with migrant agricultural workers from Mexico, the Caribbean, Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia, Guatemala and Peru before journeying to Ottawa for a demonstration in front of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.
The struggles of the agricultural worker and the migrant agricultural worker are an important part of worker history, remain current and deserve ongoing exposure. We hope to attract a significant group of labour and progressive activists for this ALHI event. We ask that you support ALHI in telling workers’ stories by joining us at this event, by encouraging your members, the labour movement at large and all progressives to come out on November 29, 2016 from 6:30 p.m. at the Metro Cinema at the corner of 87 Ave. and 109 St. here in Edmonton. The event has to date received sponsorship assistance from the Edmonton and District Labour Council, the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees and Chivers Carpenter Lawyers. Politica, the distributor of Migrant Dreams and the producers of Delano Manongs have provided further assistance. Additional assistance is welcome.