A former Revenu Québec manager and collection agent approaching her fifties has turned her back on her career to become a farm worker, where job prospects are excellent.
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“I was the director of a residence for the elderly. I then worked for five years as a tax collection agent at Revenu Québec,” says Josiane Benoît, 48, a graduate in animal production at the École professionnelle de Saint-Hyacinthe (EPSH).
“I felt like I was going to burn out, so I handed in my resignation. I wanted to sell my house and make the way to Compostela, but the pandemic arrived, ”she underlines.
A few months later, Josiane Benoît answered the call from Premier François Legault who asked Quebecers to go work on the farm... but she maintained that she had never received a call.
In his head, the idea of working on the farm takes hold. She left for four months to help a calf farmer in British Columbia. Since then, it's been love at first sight.
Today, she is completing her diploma in animal production at the Professional School of Saint-Hyacinthe (EPSH).
“We do welding, agricultural mechanics, carpentry, genetics. It's not just giving hay to the animals, ”she says.
At her side, her teacher, Gina Lamontagne, speaks with passion about the profession of agricultural worker, which inhabits her.
“There are still a lot of value judgments towards farmers. However, we feed the planet, ”she insists.
“We had very good candidates who knew nothing, who came from the asphalt, and who did an incredible job, even better than the next generation of farmers. It is the will that makes the difference,” she concludes.
–With the collaboration of Charles Mathieu
This year, there are no notable problems with the arrival of temporary foreign workers, apart from some delays related to computer glitches from Service Canada last fall, according to the Union of Agricultural Producers.