National Day of Mourning

April 28th – National Day of Mourning

A day to commemorate and mourn the loss of workers who were not adequately protected by their workplace or government.

Let us all take a moment of silence today to Remember.

Not Yet Safe

To work is more than just

Earning the daily bread

It can be a means to an end

To a higher purpose, a loved one

Or personal growth

Not a death sentence


Beneath the political proclamations

Or employer’s empty promises

An unspoken killer

The silent and insidious

Occupational disease leaves

Unrecognized victims in its wake


Heed the call of advocacy

Giving voice to the voiceless

Against those who would repress

For profit and production

Hold them to the mark

Appeal for the aggrieved


Workers, more than “objectively traumatized”

Should never live in fear

Haunted by the guilt

Of not doing enough

A livelihood shouldn’t be

A place of no protection


How do we trust the gatekeepers

When they turn a blind eye

To the monkeys on our backs?

Told to cope, heads down

While the continuing grind

Only hides the seeping poison


Whispering innuendos increase pressure

Silencing the embarrassed victims

For fear of further harm

Unable to act, frozen

By the hammer hanging overhead

Threatened by the inevitable explosion


We must come together

As a shield of solidarity

With a vigilant eye

And a supportive heart

To bring us home safe

Not in a body bag


Mikko Kivisto

Health & Safety Officer CUPE 4207

26 July 2018