On February 6, 2012, near Hampstead, Ontario, a flatbed truck collided with a passenger van carrying thirteen migrant agriculture workers. Ten of the passengers in the van were killed: David Armando Blancas-Hernandez, ElvioBravo-Suncion, Enrique Arturo Leon, Juan Castillo, Fernando Correa, Jose Mercedes Valdiviezo-Taboa, Cesar AugustoSanchez-Palacios, CorsinoJaramillo, Mario Abril, and Oscar Compomanes-Corzo.
The Ontario driver of the flatbed truck, Christopher Fulton, was also killed in the collision.
Three passengers in the van survived the crash with serious to life-threatening injuries: Juan Jose Ariza, 35; Javier Aldo Medina, 38; and Edgar Sulla-Puma, 26.
The workers in the van had just finished a day of work vaccinating chickens as contract workers for Brian’s Poultry Services. Most of the workers were from Peru and had only arrived in Canada a few days before.
UFCW Canada and the AWA called for a Coroner's Inquest into the accident, as well as better safety regulations regarding farm worker transport. To date, both the coroner and the government have failed to respond.
In the wake of the tragic accident, UFCW Canada and the Agriculture Workers Alliance (AWA) set up the Migrant Workers Family Support Fund. The Fund raised over $225,000 through the generosity of individuals, labour allies and organizations across Canada. One hundred per cent of the money collected was distributed in 14 equal portions to the individuals or families of the 14 workers who were killed or injured in the Hampstead tragedy.