Sisters and Brothers,
Hey, it is Safety Week! Specifically, May 3-9 is 2020’s North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week. This week is devoted to focus employers, employees, partners, and the public on the importance of injury and illness prevention in the workplace, at home, and in our communities.
Let’s not sugarcoat this. We all know the statistics on injury and/ or death due to workplace related hazards and occupational exposures are still not good. Workers still get hurt and/ or die on the job. This is unacceptable! Who is responsible? We all are! Responsibilities are laid out in law under our provincial Occupational Health and Safety Act. Employers have the responsibility to ensure the health and safety of workers. Workers have the responsibility to protect the health and safety of themselves, coworkers, and others. It is that simple, but it is so important.
Especially in the present Covid-19 pandemic, there are a million reasons why we need to work and be safe, but there is not one reason to work unsafe. We all deserve safe workplaces, injury and illness free, as we work to provide for our families. Local 1620’s top priority is safety as we continue to set the bar for workplace safety, but each day we must all play our role. As you do what you do best, please remember to keep the risks first and foremost as you work. Talk about the risks and always plan to work safe around them. If you cannot get a task done safely, change the way you do it. If you cannot change the way you do it, talk to your supervisor. As you know, you have the right to know (the hazards), participate (in keeping a safe workplace), and refuse (unsafe work). There is no excuse for not working safe!
I would like to express thanks to all Occupational Health and Safety Committee Representatives. The importance of your role is vital to our work being done safely. I encourage you keep addressing all safety issues to help ensure a safe workplace. Certainly, keep connected to your co-workers so we can all act together to participate in keeping a safe workplace.
Local 1620 wishes you, employers, and our communities a great week as we all promote workplace health and safety. Let’s enjoy and celebrate ‘talking the safety talk, and walking the safety walk’ this week, but let’s not stop here, please always keep safety first and foremost every day.
Please enjoy and partake in this week’s NAOSH activities.
Stay safe, stay healthy, and stay connected.