International Workers' Memorial Day

27 April 2015

Mick Whelan, general secretary of ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, has paid tribute to ASLEF’s health and safety reps ahead of International Workers’ Memorial Day tomorrow [Tuesday 28 April].

Mick said: ‘Every year, around the world, more people are killed at work than are killed in wars. Most of these men and women don’t die of mystery ailments, or in tragic ‘accidents’. They die because an employer decided their safety wasn’t a priority. On International Workers’ Memorial Day we remember them – and redouble our efforts to make sure fewer men and women die at work in the future.’

Each year trade unions remember those workers who have died on 28 April. Events, demonstrations, vigils and other activities are being organised not just here in Britain, but right around the world.

‘International Workers’ Memorial Day is intended not just to remember the dead, but to fight for those who are living,’ said Mick.

‘Every day of every week of the year, ASLEF’s health and safety representatives are working hard to ensure that Britain’s railways are safe. Safe for those who work on the railway; safe for those passengers who use the railway; and safe for those people, and firms, who depend upon the railway.

‘The railway is the most safety critical of industries and railway employees play a major role in maintaining safety. We are fortunate that the hard work of our reps, and our members, have helped make the railway a much safer place to work – despite the actions of a coalition government intent on making industry less safe under the guise of “red tape”.

‘Our thoughts go out today to those workers, around the world, who operate in workplaces that are not so safe.’

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