Today marks International Workers’ Memorial Day (IWMD) 2021, a day to remember all the people who have lost their lives due to COVID-19 and other workplace diseases and injuries.
This morning, Councillor Janet Mobbs and I attended an event to unveil a plaque in memory of the CWU members who have sadly lost their lives at work. My special thanks to Dave Kennedy, Carl Webb and Karen Kendrick of the CWU North West for inviting us to attend. I also pass on my thanks to all trade unions, who stand up and represent their members right across this country for fair pay, terms and conditions and safety at work.
IWMD serves as a reminder of the work that we need to do to make sure that health and safety legislation is both strengthened and even just adhered to, and to raise awareness about how workers can protect themselves in their workplaces.
The struggle for health and safety regulations was long-fought and still each year, more than two million men and women die as a result of work-related accidents and diseases, workers suffer approximately 270 million accidents and one worker dies every 15 seconds worldwide.
This is why it is so important to both remember and continue to fight for better protections in the workplace. Over the years, it has been trade unions that fought to protect workers by negotiating to make work safe and to have lobbied for compensation for the families of those who have lost their lives.
Joining a union will make you and your colleagues safer, and will give you collective power against your employer. If you aren’t already in a union and do not know who best represents you in your workplace, please go to the Trade Union Congress’ page to find your union: https://www.tuc.org.uk/join-a-union
On IWMD, let’s all protect ourselves by joining a union.