April 28 is Workers Memorial Day, and a number of activities are taking place to bring attention to the need for improved worker safety and health. Two congressional hearings scheduled for that day — one in the House and one in the Senate — will focus on strengthening the nation’s workplace safety and health protections. On April 23, a bill to strengthen and modernize the Occupational Safety and Health Act was introduced in the House.
Each year, Workers Memorial Day is a time for working families and their unions to mourn those who lost their lives as a result of workplace accidents and illness, and to pledge to fight for the living. On average, nearly 6,000 workers die on the job each year.
This year, family members of workers killed on the job will join safety and health activists in Washington, D.C., to attend the two congressional hearings and gather for a Workers Memorial Day observance and rally on the front steps of the U.S. Department of Labor. Later in the day, at the National Labor College in Silver Spring, Md., Labor Secretary Hilda Solis will join labor leaders for the groundbreaking of a new national workers memorial. [AFL-CIO via AFT]