Join Worksafe’s efforts to strengthen worker protections from heat illness: Sign our letter by September 24th!
After surviving last weekend’s heat spell, it’s easy to appreciate the importance of protecting the people who work outside every day in the hot sun -- harvesting and packing food, landscaping communities, building houses, parking or washing cars, directing traffic, or doing road repairs.
Every year in California, at least 600 people experience some kind of heat-related illness on the job. So far this year, at least three have died. That’s with the current heat illness prevention standard in place.
Today, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released preliminary data on the number of work-related fatalities for 2013; final figures are due out next spring. While the overall trend nationwide indicates both a lower number of deaths (4,405) and rate of fatal incidents (3.2 per 100/000 workers) compared to 2012 figures, California moved in the opposite direction: more workers killed and a startling increase in deaths among Latino workers.
The preliminary number of deaths for California in 2012 was 339, which was later revised up to 375; the preliminary figure for 2013 is already at 385 deaths. We can reasonably expect the final count to surpass 400.
There are only a few days left to get important worker safety and health bills passed in California. Take 5 minutes TODAY to pick up the phone and call your elected officials in support of two critical bills.
Click here to find your State Senate representatives. Why are you contacting your State Senator, and not Assembly Member? Because both of the below bills have cleared the Assembly and are awaiting a vote by the Senate. Be sure to mention that you live in their district and whether you represent an organization.
Call your State Senator and say that you want them to vote “YES” on AB 1634 and AB 1897.
On April 15, 2013, 26-year-old temporary worker David Eleidjian never came home from his job at a Bay Point industrial manufacturing facility. The Iraq war veteran and recent father was caught and pulled into an unguarded spinning shaft, and died later at the hospital.
Four days later, in Santa Rosa, 21-year-old Hugo Tapia also left for his temp work position, at the glass company his father had worked at for decades. He too never returned. Only two weeks into the job, he was crushed by heavy, unsecured glass that fell off an A-frame rack.
In October, amid the tensions of a BART strike brought on in part by concerns over worker safety, BART employee Chris Sheppard and consultant Laurence Daniels were inspecting a dip in the tracks near the Walnut Creek station. They were struck and killed by a train on a maintenance run, driven by a student trainee likely being instructed in the event of a prolonged strike.
Every year on April 28th, we observe Workers Memorial Day to remember those who have suffered and died on the job, and to renew our efforts for safe and healthy workplaces. This year, Worksafe invites you to join us and our partners as we take our message out into the community, near where two workers at BART were recently killed.
Date: Monday, April 28, 4:30-6:30 pm
Location: Meet at Concord BART at 4:30 pm (1451 Oakland Ave, Concord) and walk together to Todos Santos Plaza (4 blocks)
Sponsored by: AFL-CIO, Contra Costa Central Labor Council, Napa-Solano Central Labor Council, Worksafe, Contra Costa and Napa-Solano Building and Construction Trades Councils, AFSCME 3993, ATU 1555, the Labor Occupational Health Program (LOHP) at UC Berkeley, and SEIU 1021Read more...