Local 8914 Key Lake / McArthur

Day of Mourning April 28

Day of Mourning April 28
Every year approximately one thousand workers are killed across Canada and millions more globally because of their work. In fact this number is much, much higher because many deaths go unreported or workers die of occupational diseases that weren’t thought to be work related. In this province *(BC 173, Alberta 169, Saskatchewan 39, Manitoba 27) workers died because of their work. For many of us April 28th is a very personal experience. Most of us have either had an injury on the job or know someone who has had one. And many of us worked with or knew someone who was killed or injured at work. We know it could happen to any of us. And the effects can be devastating. That’s why remembering those who died is so important. It reminds us that our efforts to work safely and to encourage our employers to make work healthier and safer have a deeper meaning. It reminds us how many working people come close to losing their lives every day. This year we need to remember that since the beginning of last year, five Steelworkers and one supervisor at a USW represented operation were killed on the job in Canada. We need to remember that: February 17, 2014 Jason Shulist, age 31, a Local 7458 member who worked at the Potash Corp. Cory Mine near Saskatoon Sask. succumbed to injuries he received from a rock fall from the mine ceiling. March 16, 2014, Miles Lorenz, age 59, a Local 7284 member who worked at the Teck-Coal Mountain mine near Sparwood BC was killed when he was struck by material which fell from a parked haul truck. April 30, 2014Michael Lunn, age 61, a Local 1-1937 member who worked at the Western Forest Products sawmill in Nanaimo BC was fatally wounded by a gunman at the Nanaimo sawmill April 30, 2014 Fred McEachern, age 53, a supervisor at the Western Forest Products sawmill in Nanaimo BC was fatally wounded by a gunman at the Nanaimo sawmill September 5, 2014 Randy Yanoshewski, age 48, a Local 5917 member who worked at Varsteel in Regina Sask. was killed when struck by metal that was dislodged while being unloaded in Swift Current Sask. September 10, 2014 John Kocsis, age 51, a Local 1-1937 member who worked for North View Timber died when he succumbed to the injuries he received when the truck he was driving left the road near Lake Cowichan BC. Please bow your heads and have a moment of silence, to remember not just our members who died because of their work, but all workers who die or are injured because of their work. Now please remember: it’s not enough for us to be sad at all these lost lives or the thousands of others who died because of occupational disease. Commemoration is important. But we want to challenge each and every one of us to do something to make our workplaces healthier and safer between now and next April 28th. So let’s mourn for the dead. But let’s also fight like hell for the living. Thank you. *Fatality numbers from provincial WCB’s D3 Health, Safety & Environment Committee

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