On April 28, workers all over the U.S. will join in ceremonies remembering their colleagues who have died, were injured or became ill on the job. Even though workplace safety has improved substantially with the passage of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) and New York's Public Employee Safety and Health law (PESH), there is still a significant toll on workers, their families and society from workplace fatalities, injuries and illnesses.
NYSUT members primarily work in jobs and in workplaces that are perceived as very safe. The public doesn't see the number of NYSUT members who are diagnosed with occupational asthma every year; the broken bones and sprains from slips, trips and falls; the mental and physical toll of workplace violence; and the acute and long-term health problems from poor ergonomics and exposure to mold and chemicals.
Check to see whether a Workers' Memorial Day event is near you. Participate and remember your colleagues and all workers who have suffered from workplace hazards. You can find printable materials, ideas for creating an event and information on events that may be in your area by visiting www.coshnetwork.org/workers-memorial-week-action.
— Wendy Hord