On this National Day of Mourning, we remember and recommit to protecting workers and preventing further tragedies by helping make workplaces safe and healthy for all.
In 2018, 1,027 workers across the country died because of their job. Many more work-related deaths aren’t counted by our workers’ compensation system. This is unacceptable– we must do better.
While we can’t hold in-person gatherings this year due to COVID-19, we keep the enduring message of Day of Mourning close to our hearts. Our commitment to mourning for the dead and fighting for the living is more important than ever.
We are observing Day of Mourning virtually– click here to find virtual events in your community.
The pandemic has fundamentally changed the way we live and work. The impact on frontline workers, who have been declared essential, has been immense.
Many are doing critical work without the protections they need to keep themselves safe.
We owe it to all workers to make sure they have the protections and supports to work safely.
COVID-19 doesn’t mean we weaken those rights – it means we strengthen them.
We must be proactive in implementing protections so that workers’ lives can be saved. That’s why unions fight for the precautionary principle, which maintains that the absence of scientific certainty should not prevent prudent actions that may reduce risk.
As the world confronts COVID-19, governments and employers should be outfitting workers with all available protections, until the source of transmission is determined – not the other way around.
That means ensuring that front-line workers have the protective equipment they need, and the training to use it safely.
That means ensuring that all workers, including precarious and vulnerable workers, have access to job protections, adequate paid sick days and income supports to protect them through this crisis.
We, as a society, must do better. On April 28, we encourage you to raise awareness about the struggles faced by frontline workers during this pandemic and join together in mobilizing for change to ensure the safety and well-being of all workers.