February 20, 2024 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Dr. Kristin Lozanski, Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology, has been selected for the Faculty Mobility for Partnership Building Program (FMPBP) 2024-2025. This project builds on her extensive research with Jamaican agricultural workers in the Niagara area who are participating in Canada’s Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program (SAWP). Dr. Lozanski’s project is the first FMPBP award for King’s.

The FMPBP is part of Global Affairs Canada’s International Scholarships Program. The program enables professors at Canadian post-secondary institutions to pursue short-term research and/or teaching activities in Latin America and the Caribbean as a means of exploring, creating and advancing institutional partnerships in research, student mobility, joint programming, and capacity building.

According to Dr. Lozanski, there is limited understanding of food security in countries whose farmers provide farm work in other countries. She adds that it is critical to understand the impacts of the SAWP beyond remittances (the money that foreign workers send to their families back home). She notes “The food security of Canada and Jamaica are inextricably tied. Canada relies on the labour of Jamaican agricultural workers for crops for domestic consumption and export. While participation in the SAWP enables participants to send remittances to their families and communities, the preferential selection of farmers for the SAWP means that Jamaica is losing 9000–10 000 of its own farmers for up to eight months each year. These workers report significant impacts of their SAWP participation on their food production in Jamaica. Jamaican farmers participating in SAWP may rely on the unpaid labour of their families and/or scale back their farms. Some even abandon their farms. This means that Canada’s food security may put Jamaica’s food security at risk.”

Over the last ten years, Dr. Lozanski has established strong relationships with Jamaican farmers who participate in SAWP. “Alongside research in Canada, I have collected data throughout Jamaica, meeting with SAWP participants in their homes and communities. Building upon those relationships, this research will move beyond discussions of remittances to consider the impact of SAWP participation on food security for Jamaican farmers’ communities and the island as a whole,” she says. Dr. Lozanski also has strong local connections through her membership in the Research Cluster on Migration and Development at the University of the West Indies (UWI).

Dr. Lozanski will complete her research over two trips to Jamaica, in April and November of 2024. Both trips will include partnership building and discussions with faculty members at UWI about the possibilities for courses and experiential learning taught collaboratively by UWI and King’s faculty. These could include studies in globalization and borders, critical perspectives on tourism, and food as in/justice. Dr. Lozanski says she looks forward to exploring other initiatives that link the institutions through research and pedagogy, in meaningful ways with faculty, administrators, staff, and students at UWI.