Teamsters Brewery and Soft Drink Conference
Every year, at worksites across the country and Canada, workers honor their brothers and sisters who have been killed or injured on the job. In the U.S., approximately 60,000 workers are killed in the workplace and another 6 million are injured due to occupational accidents or illnesses.
We have seen, over the past year, the dedication and perseverance of members of the Teamsters Brewery and Soft Drink Conference as they continued – as classified essential workers – to keep with up the demand for soft drinks, bottled water, beer and wine requested by retailers across North America. Demand for products remained high, even though bars and restaurants were closed, because big box retailers increased demand due to consumer need.
Being part of the Teamsters, our members adhere to safety standards which protect them on the job. This is an integral part of being a union member – learning skills to keep you safe while working, and having the backing of a union contract.
Workers’ Memorial Day is a somber reminder of the importance of workplace safety and health. Where workplace hazards exist, workers are at risk. But today is about more than just remembering the fallen, it is also a day to reflect on the labor movement’s accomplishments in winning safer conditions and better protections for workers.
The first Workers’ Memorial Day was observed in 1989. Since then, union members around the world now mark April 28 as Workers’ Memorial Day to mark the passage of the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA). Unions fought hard to make OSHA a reality — winning protections that have made jobs safer and have prevented millions of workplace injuries and illnesses.
As we honor the sacrifice of our brothers and sisters, let us also honor their memory by recommitting ourselves to our shared fight for safety and justice. It is our duty to prevent work-related injury, illness and death, and we must remain vigilant about health and safety for every worker, union or nonunion.
I’m proud that we, as Teamsters, belong to the strongest union in North America which is a guiding light in keeping its members safe.
Greg Nowak, Director