National Day of Mourning at the Delta School District

Category: District

Message from Joanne Gill, CUPE Local 1091 3rd VP and OH&S Officer regarding the National Day of Mourning

Dear CUPE 1091 Members and All Delta School District Staff, Students and Community,

The National Day of Mourning is observed in Canada each year on April 28th.  This year marks the third Workers’ Day of Mourning since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Although we are rolling back public health measures, we know that workers need to continue to keep themselves safe at work.  Measures to increase ventilation, limit capacity, and prevent COVID-positive people from entering the workplace must remain in force.  When workers must do their jobs in proximity to people with suspected or confirmed cases of COVID, adequate personal protective equipment must be provided and required.

40 years ago, the Canadian Labour Congress members created this day to remember workers who lost their lives on the job and to inspire others to advocate to prevent further tragedies. The date – April 28th – was chosen because on this date in 1914 the Workers’ Compensation Act received its third reading in parliament and now over 100 countries observe this day around the world.

As we approach this day, I would like to ask us to remember the three CUPE members we lost this year.

Leslie Sharpe, EA who died December 1, 2021, Joel Panado, Custodian who died December 2, 2021 and Walter Giesbrecht, EA who died April 4, 2022.

We stand in solidarity with them, their loved ones, colleagues, and friends.

CUPE local 1091 respectfully requests that the Delta School District once again declares April 28th a Day of Mourning in our workplace.

This year we will raise the CUPE Day of Mourning flag at the School Board office for April 28th but will not be holding a ceremony to do it.  We will join others around the world to renew our resolve to demand healthier and safer workplaces as we remember and honour those who have been injured or killed at work.