Worker's Memorial Day 2017, President James D. Clark's message to the IUE-CWA Membership

Apr 28, 2017

Dear Sisters and Brothers:

 

Each year on April 28, the IUE-CWA observes Workers Memorial Day (WMD). We take this time to remember those who have lost their lives from on-the-job injuries and the thousands more who have been injured each year, and we reflect on how to make certain that everyone who goes to work returns home safely every day.

 

In the United States an estimated 93 workers die each week due to preventable workplace incidents.  This year’s WMD theme is “Safe Jobs-Every Worker’s Right.” 

 

April 28, is also recognized as The World Day for Safety and Health at Work. According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), worldwide each year, more than two million people die as a result of work-related incidents and diseases. 

 

The ILO’s campaign for the 2017 World Day for Safety and Health at Work focuses on the critical need for countries to improve their capacity to collect and utilize reliable occupational safety and health (OSH) data. On this World Safety Day let’s take a collective stand for the dignity of workers. Work must assure workers lives, not be taking the lives of workers

 

I am happy to report the IUE-CWA had no work-related deaths this past year. April 28th, however, is not just a day to remember; it is a day to take action.  There is nothing more important than our members working in safe workplaces. And, there is nothing more important to our union than ensuring our workplaces are as safe as possible.   

 

We encourage all IUE-CWA members and their represented companies to participate on Friday, April 28, 2017 in a moment of silence prior to the start of your shifts.

 

We urge our locals, safety committees, and members to get involved.  Here’s what you can do:

  1. Ask everyone to wear black and fly the flag at half-staff for the day
  2. Hold safety workshops inviting union members, nonunion workers and community allies to participate.
  3. Organize a memorial at a workplace where workers have lost their lives on the job.
  4. Hold a public meeting or social event.  Invite injured workers or family members to talk about the need for strong safety and health processes, and the freedom to join a union. Invite your local congressman, religious leaders, and other allies.
  5. Invite the press to your Workers Memorial Day events to increase public awareness of the dangers workers face on the job.

For more resources, including flyers in English and Spanish, as well as a map of Workers Memorial Day events; visit the AFL-CIO’s website.  http://www.aflcio.org/Issues/Job-Safety/WorkersMemorialDay