Itasca, IL – The National Safety Council is recognizing Workers Memorial Day, April 28, by remembering all workers who have died on the job and voicing its continued commitment to employee safety. Though there are fewer unintentional workplace deaths today than at any other time since such data has been recorded, each year there are thousands of job-related deaths and millions of injuries and illnesses.
“We encourage all Americans to take a moment on April 28 to reflect upon the millions of hard working people who have been hurt or killed on the job and consider how we might improve today’s employee safety,” said Janet Froetscher, NSC President & CEO. “Our nation has made great strides in improving workplace safety. From 1912, when the NSC first started gathering statistics, to 2007, unintentional work deaths per 100,000 people were reduced by an impressive 92 percent. But people continue to die at work and it is our belief that every worker deserves a safe and healthy working environment. We are indebted to those who have lost their lives in ways that illustrate where change is still needed.”
The AFL-CIO estimates that an average of 15 workers were fatally injured each day during 2007. The Bureau of Labor Statistics cites 5,488 workers killed by traumatic injuries in 2007. BLS data also indicates that Hispanic or Latino workers, particularly foreign-born workers, experience a disproportionate number of work-related fatalities.
The NSC has maintained an alliance with the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) since 2003 to improve workplace safety and health practices and provide American workers with safety information, guidance, and access to training resources. The alliance particularly emphasizes helping small businesses and minority and youth workers become aware of information and strategies for staying safe on the job.
The NSC has also joined forces with the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration to develop safety and health programs for the mining industry and educational outreach for the public.
The National Safety Council (www.nsc.org) saves lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the roads, through leadership, research, education and advocacy.