Worker Memorial Day recognized worldwide
â€œThe dedicated men and women of the U.S. Department of Laborâ€™s Occupational Safety and Health Administration pause to reflect on their mission and its meaning for the well-being of our nation," stated acting OSHA chief Jonathan Snare. "Those who enforce workplace standards, together with those engaged in outreach and compliance assistance, and all of OSHAâ€™s myriad tasks, today renew their efforts to ensure that all American workers return safely each day to their homes and loved ones."
In Ontario, provincial Labor Minister Chris Bentley said: "Although great strides have been made in improving workplace health and safety in Ontario, there is still much to do. I urge Ontarians to use the Day of Mourning to reaffirm a shared commitment to workplace safety and focus on injury prevention."
John Rea, acting director of California's Department of Industrial Relations (DIR), said Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger encouraged all citizens of California to remember and pay tribute to those workers who have lost their lives or were injured on the job.
"On this day, it is important to not only honor workers who have died on the job, but protect those who are living and working in the state," said Rea. "Our experience shows that the best prevention comes from labor and management working together on the job to identify hazards, provide training and correct unsafe conditions."
From Montana, Rion Miles, an AFL-CIO official, wrote in the Billings Gazette: "The push for production, an influx of new workers as older workers retire, reduced staffing levels and the growing use of subcontracting and outsourcing all pose a threat to workers' safety and health. Too often, work culture and the pressure to produce trump written safety and health policies; the work culture wins and workers lose â€” by being injured or killed. The labor movement is fighting against this trend."