MOSAIC has become the only settlement agency to join the Integrated Disaster Council of British Columbia (IDCBC), a network of government and non-government agencies that work together to provide humanitarian aid in the province following a disaster.
“The B.C. floods taught us that we needed a coordinated approach to working with authorities in order to meet the needs of migrant workers in disaster areas,” said Hugo Velazquez, Senior Manager of Community Outreach, Advocacy, and Migrant Worker Programs.
Through the Migrant Workers Program, MOSAIC works in coordination with 22 agencies throughout the province to provide comprehensive assistance for migrant workers, as well as maintaining close communication with the Consular Alliance for the Protection of Migrant Workers in B.C. and the Abbotsford and Richmond Fire & Rescue teams.
This extensive emergency response experience means that during the 2021 floods in B.C., MOSAIC was able to identify 150 impacted migrant workers to connect them with food hampers and other essential resources. The situation led to the creation of the CLAC-MOSAIC Migrant Workers Emergency Fund, which supports migrant workers dealing with floods, fires, abusive employers and other emergency situations.
Moving forward, Velazquez looks forward to building and strengthening MOSAIC’s response capacity during disasters and emergency situations as part of IDCBC, and sharing the results of these joint efforts with provincial and federal authorities to advocate for the creation of a much-needed permanent emergency fund for migrant workers in B.C.