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Hello,

Migrant workers at farms across Canada tell The Globe and Mail that they are being forced to stay on their work premises. Employers say the measure is necessary to curb the spread of COVID-19. But some of the workers say their bosses won’t let them leave even to get groceries – and they say they are being overcharged for the food their employers buy for them. The bills for those groceries are deducted directly from workers’ paycheques.

Canada’s farms rely on an influx of temporary foreign workers each summer to produce food. Working and living conditions on those sites drove many early cases of COVID-19.

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This is the daily Politics Briefing newsletter, written by Chris Hannay. It is available exclusively to our digital subscribers. If you’re reading this on the web, subscribers can sign up for the Politics newsletter and more than 20 others on our newsletter signup page. Have any feedback? Let us know what you think.

TODAY’S HEADLINES

For weeks, Canada appeared to have bent the curve of the coronavirus spread. But infections are once again on the rise. Experts say we have learned some valuable lessons that should help us manage a second wave, however, such as the widespread use of masks and identifying long-term care homes as a priority.

Seven in 10 Canadians are willing to go back into lockdown if a second wave does hit, a new Nanos poll suggests.

Newfoundland and Labrador’s new premier will be Andrew Furey, an orthopedic surgeon who has never held political office before. Mr. Furey won the leadership of the provincial Liberal party last night. He is the son of George Furey, the Speaker of the Senate in Ottawa.

Two former Canadians are among the Hong Kong politicians banned from seeking public office as part of China’s national-security crackdown.

And a major explosion has rocked Beirut, centred in the city’s port area. At least 10 people are reported to have died, though given videos of the devastation, that number may climb.

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Campbell Clark (The Globe and Mail) on the origins of the student-service program that was almost administered by WE Charity: “The Prime Minister’s testimony amounts to an assertion that what happened with WE wasn’t corrupt, but the only other conclusion is that it was incompetent. That is all on Mr. Trudeau.”

Lori Turnbull (The Globe and Mail) on Justin Trudeau and ethics: “To quote former ethics commissioner Mary Dawson, Mr. Trudeau seems to have developed a ‘blind spot’ with respect to ethics. He viewed his island trip [with the Aga Khan] as a holiday with friends rather than as a business meeting, but he must understand that as a celebrity in his own right, he must consider the possibility that others might wish to keep his company to advance their own causes. Ignoring that fact threatens the reputation of his public office. If the Prime Minister doesn’t understand that this is a problem, there’s little hope the WE episode will teach him anything.”

Kelly Cryderman (The Globe and Mail) on Alberta’s recovery amid a push for green policies: “It is possible to walk and chew gum at the same time. Canada will need all parts of the economy firing, including the fossil-fuel sector, to regain control of the country’s finances.”

Lloyd Axworthy and Allan Rock (The Globe and Mail) on the courts striking down the Safe Third Country Agreement: “Canada must immediately stop returning asylum seekers to the U.S. under the STCA. Although the Court suspended the effect of its decision for six months to allow Parliament to respond, it would be unconscionable for Canadian officials to continue sending claimants back in the meantime, to be imprisoned and abused. Given the fundamental rights and interests at stake, surely even one more is one too many.”

Got a news tip that you’d like us to look into? E-mail us at tips@globeandmail.com. Need to share documents securely? Reach out via SecureDrop

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