US Department of Labor to honor workers whose jobs claimed their lives, recommit to protecting workers as nation marks Workers Memorial Day

OSHA, MSHA administrators, AFL-CIO president to join national ceremony

When the nation first observed Workers Memorial Day on April 28, 1970, an estimated 38 U.S. workers suffered fatal on-the-job injuries each day and many more endured debilitating respiratory diseases and other life-altering illnesses related to workplace exposures.

Today, work-related injuries in the U.S. claim about 15 people’s lives a day. In 2022, a reported 5,486 workers suffered fatal injuries, an increase of 296 worker deaths from 2021.

This year, the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration and Mine Safety and Health Administration will remind the nation of the importance of protecting workers as families, friends, co-workers and the community at-large gather across the country for Workers Memorial Day events on Sunday, April 28 to honor people who didn’t come home at the end of their shift.

“As we honor our fallen workers on Workers Memorial Day, we must remember that behind each workplace fatality there are loved ones enduring unimaginable grief,” said Assistant Secretary for Occupational Safety and Health Doug Parker. “It is for the lost workers and those left behind that we continue to fight for every worker’s right to a safe working environment. Our mission at OSHA is to ensure that when someone leaves for work, they know they’ll come home safe at the end of the day to the arms of their families and loved ones.”

To commemorate Workers Memorial Day, the department will host a week-long series of events from April 22-25 to educate employers on the importance of safe and healthy workplaces. The series will culminate at an in-person and nationally livestreamed event at 1 p.m. EDT at its Washington headquarters where OSHA and MSHA leaders will join AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler and United Support & Memorial for Workplace Fatalities Board Member Stacy Sebold, whose 19-year-old son Mitchell McDaniel suffered fatally injuries in an agriculture incident in 2019.

“We come together on Workers Memorial Day to remember those we have lost in workplace accidents and to prevent work-related illnesses,” said Assistant Secretary for Mine Safety and Health Chris Williamson. “At MSHA, we know a safe workplace isn’t a privilege – it’s every miner’s right. It is in the memory of fallen workers that we continue to advocate for each miner’s safety, health and dignity.”

Join OSHA and MSHA representatives, families, workers, labor unions, advocates and others to remember the lives lost and raise awareness of workplace safety to help prevent future tragedies. Find a local Workers Memorial Day event.

Learn more about Workers Memorial Day events nationwide and view the April 25 livestream.

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