National Day of Mourning – Pause, Reflect, and Remember

Every year on April 28, Canada marks a National Day of Mourning to honour workers who died or were injured in the workplace. The primary mission of unions is always to protect the health and safety of workers. It is important to celebrate the memory of those who have lost their lives, suffered injury, illness or tragedy in the course of their work. No one should be subjected to working conditions that put lives at risk.

In Canada, one can show support in a variety of ways — lighting candles, laying wreaths, wearing commemorative pins, black ribbons or armbands, or observing a moment of silence. UCTE supports this movement and encourages a show of support by participating in a moment of silence at 11:00 a.m. on April 28. The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) has prepared a short video to highlight the importance of this day.

You can observe the National Day of Mourning by:

The Canadian Labour Congress is organizing ceremonies to mark the National Day of Mourning for workers who have died or been injured on the job.

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The struggle to ensure workers’ safety and health has been ongoing since very early days. These days, a campaign exists to press governments to make occupational health and safety a fundamental right through the United Nations’ International Labour Organization (ILO).1

In 2019, according to the most recent data from the Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada (AWCBC), 925 workplace deaths were recorded in this country.2 In this day and age, such a dramatic statistic should not be. Clearly, the battle is not over.

Canada must be a leader and act to ratify and implement core ILO health and safety conventions that guarantee occupational health rights and protections for all workers, as well as protections against violence and harassment.3

If you feel unsafe in your workplace, contact your local executive so that action is taken as soon as possible. UCTE is committed to providing a workplace that protects the health and safety of workers in Canada.


  1. National Day of Mourning: Work shouldn’t hurt | Public Service Alliance of Canada (
  2. National Day of Mourning: Work shouldn’t hurt | Public Service Alliance of Canada (
  3. National Day of Mourning: Work shouldn’t hurt | Public Service Alliance of Canada (



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