Statement on National Day of Mourning

April 28, 2017

Elizabeth May, Leader of the Green Party of Canada (MP, Saanich-Gulf Islands), released the following statement on the National Day of Mourning:

“Every year on April 28, flags on Parliament Hill fly at half-mast as Canadians mourn the death of workers on National Day of Mourning, a day of remembrance to honour those workers who have died, been injured or suffered illness as a result of work-related incidents. It is also a day we renew our commitment to the promotion of healthy and safe workplaces and the prevention of future fatalities.

“Years of determined lobbying by families of the Westray mine disaster led to Criminal Code provisions in 2004 to hold employers accountable when workers are injured or killed on the job. Yesterday’s renewed commitment from the Prime Minister to ensure this law is applied effectively, and negligent employers are held responsible, is welcome. We also mark the 25th anniversary of the Westray disaster on May 9 this year.

“Exposure to asbestos is the number one cause of work-related death in Canada, killing 2000 annually. I will continue to urge the government to keep its promise to ban the manufacturing, importing, exporting and use of asbestos in Canada by 2018.

“Our thoughts and prayers today are with all those who have lost their lives, been injured, disabled, or became sick while on the job.”