National Day of Mourning is April 28: Pause – Reflect – Remember

Ontario Construction News staff writer

National Day of Mourning will be marked with ceremonies and events across Canada on Apr. 28, an opportunity to remember workers who have died or become injured at work.

Traditionally, the Canadian flag flies at half-mast on Parliament Hill and on all federal government buildings. Employers and workers observe Day of Mourning in a variety of ways. Some light candles, lay wreaths, wear commemorative pins, ribbons or black armbands, and pause for a moment of silence.

Organizations, employees, communities, and individuals are encouraged to hold or support an event or observe a moment of silence at 11 a.m. April 28.

Click this link to find an event near you.

During the week leading up to Apr. 28, volunteer members of the USW visit schools annually to exchange with students first-hand experiences and concerns about workplace health and safety.

Through this exchange students learn about

  • workplace hazards they may face
  • ways to control or better yet eliminate hazards
  • their legal health and safety rights in the workplace, particularly their right to workplace-specific information, instruction and training
  • ongoing work to enforce and improve health, safety andenvironmental legislation.

According to the Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada (AWCBC), in 2022, there were 993 workplace fatalities recorded in Canada. Among these deaths were 33 young workers aged 15-24.

Add to these fatalities the 348,747 accepted claims (an increase of 71,530 from last year year) for lost time due to a work-related injury or disease, including 40,203 from workers aged 15-24 to understand the impact on workers, their families and colleagues.

In 1991, eight years after the day of remembrance was launched by the Canadian Labour Congress, the Parliament of Canada passed the Workers Mourning Day Act and the remembrance has spread to more than 100 countries around the world and is recognized as Workers’ Memorial Day, and as International Workers’ Memorial Day by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC).


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