International Workers Memorial Day

Tomorrow (Tuesday 28 April) is International Workers Memorial Day.

Every year more people are killed at work than in wars. Most don’t die of mystery ailments, or in tragic “accidents”. They die because an employer decided their safety just wasn’t that important a priority. Workers’ Memorial Day commemorates those workers.

Workers’ Memorial Day is held on 28 April every year, all over the world workers and their representatives conduct events, demonstrations, vigils and a whole host of other activities to mark the day.

The day is also intended to serve as a rallying cry to “remember the dead, but fight for the living”.

PCS support calls for strong regulation, in the UK, Europe and internationally. PCS are committed to campaign for:

· full protection of statutory time for union health and safety reps.

· better worker protections against work-related stress, back pain and other musculoskeletal disorders, long hours, excessive workloads, presenteeism, and poorly designed jobs and workplaces

· zero tolerance on bullying, harassment and victimisation

· meaningful joint preventive, inspection and enforcement action

· a fully resourced and independent Health and Safety Executive.

PCS campaigns with other unions, the TUC and other campaigning organisations (Hazards, and Families Against Corporate Killers) to defend our members, jobs and services.

My trade union sent me this message today and a well thought out message it is too. Many moan about Health & Safety regulations but they are there to keep us safe in the workplace and elsewhere. They may sometimes look like too much red tape but the reality is that many lives have been saved and accidents reduced by sensible H&S planning. Forget the nonsense of stopping kids playing with conkers and remember that lives can be saved by H&S compliance – maybe you or I have been saved from an accident at some time but we don’t know it because what we did had been made safe or safer.

As a former Health and Safety Representative and Trade Union Officer I know the value of a safe workplace.