AFL-CIO Wisconsin: Union members honor workers killed on the job this Workers Memorial Day

For Immediate Release

Contact:  Karen Hickey, 414-573-7579, khickey@wisaflcio.org

Wisconsin union members pay tribute, pledge to fight for better safety regulations

(WISCONSIN, APRIL 25, 2019) — Working people through unions have worked to gain necessary life-saving protections at workplaces across the country. Yet, every day, 150 American workers die from on-the-job accidents and illnesses, while thousands more are injured.

On April 28, Workers Memorial Day, Wisconsin workers will gather to commemorate our brothers and sisters who have lost their lives, and to demand stronger safety protections on the job. In cities, towns, union halls, at worksites and memorials, and in community after community—union members gather to remember our brothers and sisters who have lost their lives at work and to pledge to work for a better workplace for tomorrow.

“Every American has the right to a safe and healthy workplace. Hardworking men and women putting in long hours deserve to know that they’re going to make it home at the end of the day,” said Stephanie Bloomingdale, President of the Wisconsin AFL-CIO. “Yet, too many Wisconsin families mourn loved ones killed at work. On Workers Memorial Day, we honor lives lost and fight for stronger protections and safety regulations so no worker is killed on the job.”

The most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that 106 workers were killed in Wisconsin in 2017, and many more suffered from occupational diseases. This year marks an especially urgent fight as the Trump administration continues to roll back and weaken protections and rights for working people. These actions have ranged from repealing or weakening standards on toxic chemicals and safety hazards, to cutbacks in enforcement, to efforts to eliminate key job safety research and training programs. The administration has also refused to take action on critical safety and health problems like workplace violence, silica exposure in mining and other serious hazards.

“Workers will continue to organize through our unions to secure the protections we deserve,” continued Bloomingdale. “The Trump Administration should know that a safe job is every worker’s right.”

This Workers Memorial Day, Wisconsin working families continue to stand up for safe workplaces. Local commemorations are taking place at:

Eau Claire: Sunday, April 28th at 12:30 pm at the Eau Claire Labor Temple – 2233 Birch Street in Eau Claire, WI

La Crosse:  Sunday April 28th at 1:00 pm at Green Island Park – 2312 7th Street South in La Crosse, WI

Madison:  Friday, April 26, 2019. 10:00 a.m. press conference to honor our fallen brothers and sisters at Christ Presbyterian Church, 944 East Gorham Street, Madison.

Construction Workers Memorial, Madison: Thursday, April 25, 3:00 p.m. line up at Monona Terrace for a 3:30 p.m. Hard Hat Processional to St Patrick’s Church, 404 E Main, St. followed by 4:00 pm service at St Patrick’s. Hosted by the Wisconsin State Building Trades and Construction Business Group to honor individuals who lost their lives in construction accidents in Wisconsin.

Milwaukee:  Sunday April 28 at 2:30 p.m. at Zeidler Union Square Park, 4th and Michigan. WisCOSH will be holding a 1:00 p.m. brunch prior to the ceremony. There will be a memorial process from the hall at 417 N. 3rd St. to the park.

Rhinelander:  Thursday, April 25th, 5:30 p.m.- 6:00 p.m. at Pioneer Park (corner of Kemp and Oneida Ave.), Rhinelander.

Wausau:  Sunday, April 28th at 5pm at the Workers’ Memorial Site, 388 River Drive., Wausau, WI 54403.

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