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Safety Reps ALERT- Workers' Memorial Day 2004
Remember the Dead and Fight for the Living


Workers' Memorial Day is on Wednesday 28 April 2004 In the UK every year hundreds of workers are killed just doing their jobs and thousands more die of illnesses caused by their work. Most are killed because their employers fail to comply with the law or to manage health and safety properly.

Employers are aided and abetted in this negligence by governments which give health and safety a very low priority. This government has so far failed to keep its manifesto promise to implement a new law of corporate killing to make employers accountable for killing workers by negligence. It is also dragging its feet on a Revitalising Health and Safety commitment to make Directors legally responsible for health and safety in their companies. Hazards campaigners say: 'Deaths caused by employers negligence are a crime and there should be a law against it.'

World-wide 2 million are killed by work each year. Jukka Takala Director of Safe Work at the United Nations International Labour Organisation, said: "If terrorism took such a toll, just imagine what would be said and done."

Workers Memorial Day is one day when we can act locally, nationally and be linked in international solidarity to publicise the real reasons why workers are being killed in incidents and by diseases and to demand political action to reverse the massive number of deaths caused by the Workplaces of Mass Destruction.

Each year in the UK and world-wide, hundreds of thousands of trade unionists carry out workplace and public activities to 'Remember the Dead and Fight for the Living'. While these events generate lots of local media coverage, we have failed to break through and get WMD recognised nationally as, say, World Aids Day or Remembrance Sunday.

We are fighting for our lives so get organised using the resources listed below and make the campaign to stop the killing of workers too big to ignore in 2004.

Don't forget to let us know what you are doing so we can publicise it, our address is mail@gmhazards.org.uk.

The theme
ICFTU/TUAC/global union federations/national union centres Occupational Health, Safety & Environment Panel agreed on a 2004 theme "Safe and Healthy Work for All" with "Employer Accountability" as a secondary theme.

Resources

Hazards webpage - for background and resource links and will be updated regularly as specific 2004 material becomes available The Hazards deadly business webpages carries resources on unions and employer accountability, and a detailed background document on WMD 2004 theme will be up shortly. Over past year, unions in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and UK have run employer accountability/industrial manslaughter campaigns; Canada and 2 Australian states have introduced Laws on workplace deaths and employer accountability and the UK has promised (again) to publish a draft bill on Corporate Killing shortly. Deadly Business webpages have regular news updates

Greater Manchester Hazards Centre
has background on Workers Memorial Day and past activities to give you ideas plus a Safety Reps Guide which will shortly be on www.gmhazards.org.uk We also have Hazards Campaign WMD posters and sell WMD purple Forget-me-Knot ribbons at 25 per hundred inc p&p which can be can be ordered from:

GMHC, 23 New Mount Street, Manchester M4 4DE Tel 0161 953 4037.

The TUC has an on-line Book of Remembrance and information about what was done last year plus background briefings and will have 2004 material shortly on www.tuc.org.uk/h_and_s/

The Hazards Campaign has a copy of the Hazards Charter listing all our demands to stop workers being murdered at work www.hazardscampaign.org.uk London Hazards Centre has an on-line Memorial Book for construction workers www.lhc.org.uk Centre for Corporate Accountability has background information and names of people killed at work on www.corporateaccountability.org

The ILO website has global statistics and background on

Check your own Union website for 2004 material


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