Fight for the living, remember the dead
Today is Workers’ Memorial Day – a day of significance and importance in highlighting the ongoing risks to health and safety which still cause tragic deaths and serious injuries on a daily basis.
The day is now observed in at least 19 countries around the world, and in case those of us in the United Kingdom start to think in these days of improved technology, and greater safety awareness, that terrible accidents at work are a thing of the past – there will be numerous events attended at memorials all over the Country to remind us that this is not the case, and vigilance must be maintained. In Birmingham, a part of a pillar built from the old Town Hall is now sited in the grounds of the Cathedral as a memorial to those who lost their lives building the Town Hall, and the hundreds who have been killed or injured at work in and around the Midlands since then.
There are many good employers out there, mindful of their duty to make work a safe environment, but regrettably still many workers are exposed to unnecessary and unreasonable risks in simply doing their jobs – and Workers Memorial Day provides us with an opportunity to campaign ever harder to make the safety of workers the biggest priority for employers, in the hope that nobody ever has to lose a loved one or sustain serious injuries in the future. There is still work to be done. In 2013-2014, 42 people lost their lives in the UK construction industry. In the waste industry, there were four fatalities in 2013-2014, and worryingly despite only having 0.5% of the UK workforce the industry accounted for 2.6% of reported injuries to workers. In the same year, five people died and there were 277 major injuries in the sale and repair of motor vehicles sector. 14 manufacturing workers were killed at work in the same period.
Each of these events is a personal tragedy, statistics are often easy to quote without bringing to mind the pain, hurt, loss and other consequences when health and safety fails and people die or sustain life changing injuries. That is why Clarke Willmott supports Workers’ Memorial Day and will continue to campaign alongside others to make the protection of workers the paramount concern for all employers, and so that these tragic situations will be avoided. The motto of the campaign has often been “Fight for the living, remember the dead” – a phrase which is not just worth thinking about, but also must be acted upon.
Clarke Willmott has long supported the rights of injured workers and the families of those who have been killed. If you would like to contact anyone about the work that Clarke Willmott does please contact:-