Day of Mourning Ceremony for Fallen Workers

April 18, 2017

In the blink of an eye, a workplace accident can change the course of many lives – the worker’s, their families, and loved ones. In February and March alone, six BC workers were killed on the job.

To help raise awareness of the importance of workplace safety, local organizations are coming together for an annual event honouring workers who have been killed, injured, or suffered from work-related illness.

On Friday, April 28 at 10:00 am, everyone is welcome to a Day of Mourning flag-raising ceremony at Simms Park, hosted by the City of Courtenay, CUPE 556, and Threads of Life. In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony will be moved to the Courtenay Fire Hall, 650 Cumberland Road.

Paige Knapman, occupational health and safety advisor for the City of Courtenay, said the event is an important reminder of the need to remain vigilant on workplace safety. “It’s not an easy thing to think about,” noted Knapman. “Accidents in the workplace can happen in an instant, with potentially devastating results. Other workplace hazards are less obvious, such as exposure to hazardous materials, but can be just as dangerous over the long-term.

“We encourage individuals and organizations to join us at the Day of Mourning flag raising in honour of all workers and families who have been affected by workplace accidents or illnesses.”

The Day of Mourning has been a national event since 1991.

In 2016 there were 144 workplace-related fatality claims accepted by Worksafe BC.

The Canadian Labour Congress first recognized the Day of Mourning in 1984. In 1990, this day became a national observance with the passing of the Workers Mourning Day Act, and on April 28, 1991, the federal government officially proclaimed the national Day of Mourning.

Everyone is welcome to attend the Day of Mourning ceremony. For more, please contact Knapman at 250-334-4441.

For more details on the Day of Mourning, including a list of other ceremonies around B.C., visit