PHOTO: Mariam Moussa Agrei
Immigration has long been part of Canada’s strategy to fill the roles of essential healthcare workers. According to the 2016 Census, more than 335,000 immigrants work in health-related occupations. Temporary foreign workers, permanent residents, and new citizens make up a significant percentage of the healthcare workforce in this country, even more so during COVID-19.
Abdoul Abdi’s sister Fatuma once told me that the reason she and Abdoul do not speak Somali is because when they would speak to each other in their language, the workers would put them on time out and isolate them in their rooms, accusing them of plotting together to escape.