Why We Honor Fallen Workers Today

Workers Memorial Day

On Workers Memorial Day we remember workers who lost their lives on the job. It’s a good time to let others know about how risky some jobs are and to remind us about the responsibility that employers have to protect their workers. Every worker should feel protected at work from physical harm, harassment, and illegal employment practices. As business owners ourselves, we understand the biggest focus is on getting the job done. But you need to question, if the job can’t be done safely, should you be doing it at all?   

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that in 2015, 150 workers died on the job in North Carolina. That is the last year for which we have statistics. That number was up from 137 the previous year, but still lower than the high of 234 in the year 2000. In the Southeast, the trend has been upward in the last few years!

The largest percentage of fatalities came from:

  • Transportation incidents
  • Contact with objects and equipment
  • Violence

Which occupations saw the most worker deaths in 2015?

First, the private construction industry. Not surprisingly, the majority of fatalities on construction sites came from falls, slips and trips.

The second highest number of fatalities came from what is called the private professional and business services industry and the majority of those deaths were in the landscaping business.

So, please take a moment today to consider the risk some workers and their families took to construct your workplace and plant those trees you are enjoying!

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