The April 28 Day of Mourning is a day to reflect on the lives that have been lost in the workplace, or from work-related injuries and disease, says Patrick Dillon, business manager of the Provincial Building and Construction Trades Council of Ontario. “All workplace deaths are completely preventable,” he said.
“As we mourn every life lost, we implore our business, government, and union leaders to step up in driving real prevention forward. This means a change in attitudes, but more importantly, a meaningful change in behaviour.”
Ontario’s building trades unions, together with signatory contractors are doing their part in advancing prevention by investing in apprenticeship training programs that are critically important to achieving safer working conditions.
April 28th is a nationally recognized day to remember the victims of workplace tragedies, but also to reiterate the need for healthy and safe workplaces across every sector of the economy, especially in construction, which has tragically accounted for the highest share of lives lost to occupational injury and disease. Across Ontario and across the country, ceremonies will be held to mourn the fallen from industrial disease and workplace death.
“Behaviours shape attitudes as much as the other way around, Dillon said, adding that “we need to secure more and better training for workers, enforce existing safety laws, and punish firms and individuals who put workers’ lives at risk with more stringent regulations and harsher sentences (including jail time) until others are deterred and safety outcomes finally begin to change. Business-as-usual will not get the job done when it comes to prevention,” he said.
The Provincial Building and Construction Trades Council of Ontario represents 150,000 trades workers throughout the province.