A Work in Progress
From the Panama Canal to migrant farm workers, #tradeunions and my own experiences, Caribbean people have often filled labour shortages and did undesirable jobs, travelling far to provide for themselves and their families, sometimes risking their lives to do so.
This is part of my family’s story and an inspiration of Malaika’s Costume and the series.
In this slide carousel, I share about about Caribbean migrant work.
This Labour Day, I reflect on Caribbean migrant workers, labour unions, books, and my work in teaching and writing.
Books featured here are:
- They Call Me George: The Untold Story of Black Train Porters and the Birth of Modern Canada by Cecil Foster
- My name's not George: The story of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters : personal reminiscences of Stanley G. Grizzle by Stanley Grizzle
- Malaika’s Costume by Nadia L. Hohn (aka me)
- Dying to Better Themselves: West Indians and the Building of the Panama Canal by Olive Senior
Fun facts: Stanley Grizzle was born in Toronto in 1918 of Jamaican parents and was the president of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters. He eventually became a Canadian Citizenship Judge. His daughter Nerene Virgin. Stanley died in 2016 and I had the pleasure of speaking with him on multiple occasions.
Please note: Stereotypes of the happygolucky or lazy Caribbean person are racist and utterly false.
To learn more about more Caribbean migrant experiences, read stories about domestic workers, nurses, trades people, and the Windrush generation.