Individuals and organizations gathered Thursday at the Simms Park Pavilion for the Day of Mourning ceremony and moment of silence to honour workers who have been killed, injured, or suffered from work-related illness.
The City of Courtenay, WorkSafeBC, District Labour Council and CUPE 556 hosted the annual event that helps raise awareness of the importance of workplace safety.
“It’s a reminder to all of us that we need to stay vigilant, minimize risks, and speak up if we think something isn’t safe,” said Paige Knapman, the city’s occupational health and safety advisor.
“Some of us are far too familiar with workplace accidents,” said Courtenay Mayor Bob Wells, who at age 10 lost his father to a workplace accident. “This had a devastating effect on myself and my family, and those around us.”
The Day of Mourning has been a national event since 1991.
The Canadian Labour Congress first recognized the Day of Mourning in 1984. In 1990, the day became a national observance with the passing of the Workers Mourning Day Act, and on April 28, 1991, the federal government officially proclaimed the National Day of Mourning.