I am very pleased to be helping launch NAOSH Week 2012 at Centennial College on Monday, May 7th with our health and safety partners. This marks 16 years that employers, workers and governments across North America have taken the time to promote the importance of preventing injury and illness in the workplace.
The theme of NAOSH week this year is “Making it Work”. It reminds us that we all need to not only plan, but act. We need to constantly create awareness of these issues throughout our daily routines at work, at home and in our communities, and it is forums such as this that make this possible.
Our successes in achieving the goals of NAOSH week will result in eliminating fatalities, injuries and diseases from the workplace.
April 28th has been designated as the “National Day of Mourning” in Canada. Since its recognition as an annual day of remembrance in 1985 by the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), and then becoming an official National observance by the passing of the Workers Mourning Day Act on 1991 by the federal government of Canada, April 28th has been a day of remembrance for those killed or injured on the job and a time of renewal of our commitment to accident and illness prevention.
It is a call to action – it is not only an opportunity to recognize and honour those that have been killed or injured on the job, but also to highlight the preventable nature of workplace accidents and occupational illnesses. It’s an opportunity to re-dedicate ourselves to the prevention of injury and illness and the active encouragement for all workplaces to adopt safety standards and programs to ensure that, at the end of every day, every worker returns home safe and healthy.
I hope everyone will take a moment on this solemn day to think of their fellow workers and consider how you can contribute to creating a workplace and community that is safe and supportive for all.