Trumka spoke as the labor federation marked the annual Workers Memorial Day commemoration of worker deaths and injuries on April 28.
About 150 workers each day died as a result of hazardous working conditions in 2015, according to a new AFL-CIO study that found that more than 50,000 workers died that year after either suffering workplace injuries or from illnesses and occupational diseases contracted at work.
One-third of the workers who died from workplace injuries were over the age of 55, and the fatality rates of workers over 65 and Latinos are notably above average as well.
“Corporate negligence and weak safety laws,” said Trumka, “have resulted in tragedy for an astonishing and unacceptable number of working families.”
On today’s labor calendar, today’s LaborFest tour of the National Museum of American History is completely filled but there’s still space in many of our other events; go to dclabor.org and click on LaborFest to see what’s on offer and sign up or get your tickets for our Labor FilmFest screenings at AFI. I especially recommend the May 16 screening of “Matewan” with director John Sayles.
Also a reminder that if you’re downtown around 16th and I, stop by the AFL-CIO and check out the free exhibit of labor film posters in the AFL-CIO’s lobby; it’s open 8a to 5p every weekday.
Here’s today's labor history:
On this date in 1919, Jerry Wurf was born in New York City. Wurf served as president of AFSCME, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, from 1964 to his death in 1981. The union grew from about 220,000 members to more than 1 million during his presidency.
In 1997, 12,000 Steelworkers at Goodyear Tire & Rubber won an 18-day strike for improved wages and job security.
Today’s labor quote is by Jerry Wurf, who said
“Government workers have proved that when they are not dealt with justly, they will defy the law. And they have proved that, in such situations, government is powerless.”
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