As we approach the April 28 Day of Mourning, it is appropriate to reflect on the fact that many workers continue to be killed, infected, or seriously injured on the job. Many more have suffered and died from industrial accidents either caused by workplace exposures or inadequate safety measures. In British Columbia, 173 workplace fatalities were reported to BC WCB in 2020.
This is still the tragic reality in many economic sectors. As COVID-19 rages on, we must also now add health care, long-term care, security, transportation/delivery, retail and banking to that growing list of affected workers. As we mourn those fallen heroes, we stand in solidarity with them, their loved ones, colleagues, and friends.
April 28 is our National Day of Mourning to remember workers who have suffered work-related disability, disease and death. The Canadian Labour Congress first declared the Day in 1984. More than 100 countries now observe the Day. The day of observance was passed into legislation by the Workers Mourning Day Act, and encourages all Canadians to remember workers killed and injured in the workplace, or as a result of occupational disease.
Take time to remember
- Attend the virtual Day of Mourning ceremony which begins at 10:30 am on Wednesday, April 28. Encourage others to attend a local virtual event. We may be separated by this pandemic, but we can still be together in grief, condolence and solidarity.
- Consider changing your Facebook profile picture on April 28 to mark the Day of Mourning. The images you need to do this, along with simple instructions can be accessed here.
- Share the poster to honour the memory of all workers who have been killed and injured in the workplace.
- Observe a moment of silence at 11 a.m.
- Share stories of workers injured and killed on the job - ensure they are not forgotten.
- Update your health and safety knowledge through virtual training and webinars.
- Video about the history of the Day of Mourning. The Day of Mourning – The Untold Story
- Learn about the Day of Mourning in Schools Project.
- Learn how the BCFED Health & Safety Centre can support your workplace prevention efforts throughout the year: Virtual course offerings
- Download and print the BCFED OH&S Centre DOM Poster