TORONTO, April 28, 2020 – Today, on the National Day of Mourning, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) encourages everyone to take a moment to remember the people who died, were injured or suffered illness in the workplace.
“In 2019, 190 people in Ontario died because of work-related injuries or illness - 190 different stories of grief, loss, and families and friends whose lives have been tragically changed forever,” said Elizabeth Witmer, WSIB Chair. “As the global battle against the COVID-19 pandemic takes place around us, we also acknowledge the thousands of lives it has taken around the world, and the thousands more it has touched with devastation.”
To commemorate the Day of Mourning this year, Elizabeth Witmer and Tom Teahen, WSIB President and CEO share a special message. The WSIB aims to build awareness of this important day using television, radio, social media and its Day of Mourning website.
“None of us should take for granted our own health and safety, and that of our family, friends, co-workers and communities,” said Teahen. “We all need to know how to recognize health and safety risks in our workplace and understand our right to safe and healthy work. Because awareness is the most important safety equipment there is.”
This evening, various landmarks across the province will be illuminated in yellow, traditionally a colour of hope. These include: the CN Tower, Niagara Falls, Kitchener City Hall, Guelph City Hall (Market Square), Hamilton City Hall (HAMILTON sign) and the 3D TORONTO sign in Nathan Phillips Square.
April 28th was chosen as the date for the National Day of Mourning in 1984, when the Canadian Labour Congress proclaimed the Day to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the day the first Ontario Workers’ Compensation Act was approved by the government. The Day of Mourning was enshrined in national legislation by an Act of Parliament on February 1, 1991.
For further information, please contact:
WSIB media relations