Day of Mourning 2020

April 28, 2020

Mourn for the Dead, Fight for the Living

On this day, we mourn those we have lost. We mourn the parents who went to work in the morning, but didn’t make it home to their kids at night. We mourn the skilled trades workers whose lungs failed them after years of breathing bad air on the job. 

And as we mourn, we also recommit ourselves to fight like hell for the living. This year for us at PB, this dedication has taken on a deepened sense of urgency.

As we solemnly remember the workers we’ve lost, we are fighting alongside all workers on the frontlines delivering healthcare, teaching our kids, stocking shelves, and driving goods across our country.

Too often safety is seen as personal responsibility. But now, perhaps more than ever, we need to empower our fellow Canadians to demand safe working conditions from employers. And we need to echo their calls. 

And when those conditions aren’t met? We must support our fellow workers in exercising their right to refuse unsafe work.

This is a basic right, and as brave Canadians continue to fight an invisible enemy on the frontlines, we must all demand the best conditions for them.

This means surgical masks that actually fit for nurses and physicians. This means mental health supports for teachers. This means adequate breaks and rest periods for truck drivers. This means single site rules for health care workers in seniors care. And this means workers in meatpacking plants can physically distance while on the job.

Sadly, many of these standards are not being met today. And we owe it to those workers we lost last year to demand better for those who are risking their lives to keep our communities safe and strong right now.

Please attend one of these virtual ceremonies with us and mourn those we have lost. And, this year, fight like hell alongside us for those workers on the frontlines of this crisis.