Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Human Resources and Social Development Canada
Government of Canada

Government of Canada
Office of the Minister of Labour

Office of the Minister of Labour

April 27, 2007 10:48 ET

Minister Blackburn Honours Workers Who Died or Were injured in Work Related Incidents

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - April 27, 2007) - To mark the National Day of Mourning which will be held tomorrow, Saturday, April 28, the Honourable Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Minister of Labour and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec, paid tribute today to workers killed or injured in work related incidents.

"The Day of Mourning is a tragic reminder that every day someone's father, mother, sister or brother goes to work and fails to return home safely," said Minister Blackburn. "Remembering these people is very important: it allows us to express sympathy for the grief and suffering experienced by the victims, their family, friends and colleagues. It also reminds us that the work to be done in the area of occupational health and safety is far from over."

Nearly 1,100 Canadians died in 2005 as a result of work-related causes. This means that on average, three workers died every day. In the same year, approximately 338,000 work-related illnesses and injuries were reported-many of which were preventable.

Minister Blackburn also asked employees and employers to be careful and attentive when in their workplace. "It is a personal and collective responsibility. When we are witnesses to a situation that we consider dangerous, it is necessary to take the time to stop and solve the problem, or to make sure that this is done."

Safe and healthy workplaces were one of the issues federal, provincial and territorial ministers responsible for labour discussed at their annual meeting this year. Ministers responsible for labour have pledged to work together towards fostering safe and healthy workplaces.

In December 1990, the Government of Canada passed the Workers Mourning Day Act, which established April 28 as the official day to be observed every year to commemorate workers who were injured or died on the job and those who suffer from occupational illnesses.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Blackburn
    Emma Welford
    819-953-5646
    or
    Human Resources and Social Development Canada
    Media Relations
    819-994-5559