For Immediate Release Contact:
Union and Community Members Call on (City) and National Leaders to Prioritize Good, Safe Jobs at Workers’ Memorial Day Service
Local Working People in (City) Honored Those Injured or Killed on the Job in the Last Year and Call for Change
(Date, City) — Local factory workers, firefighters, nurses, other workers, and community members were joined by (Speaker name and title) and (Speaker name and title) to mourn for those who were injured or killed on the job in the past year and to commit to escalating the fight for safer jobs in (insert community name).
The event was part of Workers’ Memorial Day, held annually on April 28. The group came together under the banner, “Protect Our Rights, Speak Up for Safe Jobs.” Hundreds of events similar to the one in (insert community name) took place across the globe. This is the 49th annual observance of Workers’ Memorial Day.
A total of 5,200 workers died from a work-related injury in the U.S. in 2018, the highest annual figure since 2008. The fatal injury rate was 3.5 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers, one of the highest since 2010. In addition, there were about 176,900 recordable cases of occupational illness in 2018; 50,000 to 60,000 workers die annually from occupational illnesses.
“Our mourning is deep, but our commitment to fight for the living and to put an end to workplace deaths and injuries is even deeper,” said (XX, of XX Union Local XX). The group pointed out that efforts to make the companies more competitive and productive have brought with them new safety and health concerns. Changes such as downsizing, increased hours and pace of work, and changes in technology and work processes are taking a huge toll on workers. (XX worker) from (XX local employer) told how workers across this country are seeking a voice at work so that they can have good jobs that pay decent wages and provide health care benefits and pensions as well as improved safety conditions at work. “Increasingly workers are forming unions to preserve working families’ quality of life as corporations, in their push to produce, ignore their own written safety and health programs, threatening workers’ lives for a few more dollars in profit,” said (XX worker).
The event took place at (insert location), where workers shared stories of loved ones who were killed on the job, offered personal testimonies about local companies and their safety conditions, and emphasized the need to form unions to address these safety concerns.