On April 28th, the unions of the American Federation of Labor and Congress for Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) will observe Workers’ Memorial Day to remember those who have suffered and lost their lives on the job.
The union uses this day to honor and mourn those who have died. But they also use it to fight for the living.
This year, the AFL-CIO hopes that its people will come together to defend the current regulations and laws that protect hard working Americans.
According to a statement from AFL-CIO, “The Occupational Safety and Health Act and Mine Safety and Health Act promise workers the right to a safe job. Unions and our allies have fought hard to make that promise a reality—winning protections that have made jobs safer, saved hundreds of thousands of lives and prevented millions of workplace injuries and illnesses. But our work is not done.”
They go on to say, “Each year, thousands of workers are killed and millions more suffer injury or illness because of their jobs. Workplace fatalities are on the rise again.”
The AFL-CIO commits to fighting until all workers have safe jobs. Instead of seeing cutbacks on regulations and federal enforcement and agency workers, they want to see a sufficient amount of protections in place for workers across the country.
Specifically, they are concerned that agency budgets and enforcement programs are on the chopping block. They fear that the safety and health of both workers and the public are in danger.
In honor of Workers’ Memorial Day, several events are taking place throughout the country. You can click on the map here to find an event near you.
In one of their Workers’ Memorial Day fliers, the AFL-CIO explains that “This year, we will come together to stand united against the attacks on workers’ rights and protections. We will demand that elected officials put workers’ well-being above corporate interests and demand good jobs that are safe and healthy and pay fair wages. We will defend the right of every worker to a safe job and fight until that promise is fulfilled.
The AFL-CIO encourages everyone to participate. You can do so by:
- Organizing a rally for stronger health and safety protections
- Holding a candlelight vigil for fallen workers
- Highlighting job safety problems at workplaces in your community
- Holding public meetings with members of Congress who represent your area
- Encouraging your local press to raise awareness of the dangers that workers face on the job
The AFL-CIO is a democratic, voluntary federation of 55 national and international labor unions that represent 12.5 million working men and women. The federation “helps make safe, equitable workplaces and give working people a collective voice to address workplace injustices without the fear of retaliation.”
For more information, visit their website at https://aflcio.org.