In 1970 the AFL-CIO declared April 28 Workers’ Memorial Day to honor the hundreds of thousands of working people killed and injured on the job every year. Workers’ Memorial Day is an opportunity to highlight the preventable nature of most workplace incidents and to promote improvements in workplace safety.
Following the passage of the Occupational Safety and Health Act by the U.S. Congress in 1970, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration was formed in 1971. Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their workers. OSHA’s role is to ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance.
Workers’ Memorial Day is observed annually not only to honor those workers who have died on the job, but also to acknowledge the suffering experienced by families and communities, and to recommit ourselves to the fight for safe and healthful workplaces for all workers.