Ontario Federation of Labour

Ontario Federation of Labour

April 28, 2009 10:02 ET

OFL Statement - Day of Mourning, April 28

Attention: Assignment Editor, Media Editor, News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor TORONTO/STATEMENT--(Marketwire - April 28, 2009) - "When a worker dies or is injured on the job there is more than just one heartbeat that stops, skips a beat or pounds. One worker down also means a motherless family, a generation growing up fatherless, a community that has lost a voice and volunteer. Friends lose half of the past they shared with the person lost," says Ontario Federation of Labour president Wayne Samuelson.

"We must never forget how many victims there really are when we pay our respects on the Day of Mourning. For people who lose a loved one every day is a day of mourning."

Last year 356 workers lost their lives and 317,031 more filed claims for injuries and occupational disease. Samuelson asks, "How many lives have been altered forever by these statistics?"

April 28 allows all Canadians and people throughout the world to pay respect to those who died or suffered injuries and diseases on the job. Not only labour but all people must dedicate themselves to fight for the living and prevent unnecessary deaths and diseases in the workplace.

In 1988, an NDP resolution, passed unanimously in the Ontario legislature, recognized April 28 as the Provincial Day of Mourning. In 1991, a Private Member's Bill, sponsored by the NDP, proclaimed April 28 of each year as the National Day of Mourning. According to the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU), events commemorating the day of mourning are now held in nearly 100 countries. The Day of Mourning is now a global event.


Contact Information

  • Wayne Samuelson, President, Ontario Federation of Labour
    Primary Phone: 416-571-7408
    Secondary Phone: 416-443-7678
    Toll-Free: 800-668-9138