The flag at City Hall will fly at half-mast this Friday and while many residents of the Nipissing District will honour those who have been killed because of workplace-related hazards and incidents. The North Bay Labour Council will join the rest of Canadian labour by honouring the 26 workers killed in the Westray Coal Mine explosion in Nova Scotia back in 1992. In a release, the labour council says unions and employers continue to make significant strides in preventing workplace deaths and injuries but much more is needed.

They say unions and employers continue to make significant strides in preventing workplace deaths and injuries by educating workers to limit risks through greater safety measures. Reducing workplace exposure to harmful materials that impact the near and long-term health of front line workers has also had a positive impact according to the Labour Council. However, workplace injuries and fatalities continue to be a major issue in Canada.

Even though Canada passed the Westray Law in 2004, which amended the Criminal Code of Canada to hold corporations criminally accountable for causing preventable death and injury on the job, the council says there is still more work to do. Enforcement of the Westray Law continues to a problem with too many employers still getting away with practices and negligence that result in workers being killed according to the release.

The council is inviting people to join them in support of workplace safety outside city hall beginning at 10:30AM with a brief reception to follow at OPSEU Hall on First Street West. North Bay and District Labour president, Henri Giroux and OFL Executive Vice President Ahmad Gaied will speak about the importance of preventing workplace injuries and fatalities. Deputy Mayor Sheldon Forgette will bring greetings from city council by reading the proclamation.