Town of Amherst lowers flags to half-mast in recognition of the National Day of Mourning

Flags flown by the Town of Amherst were lowered to half-mast on April 27 in recognition of the National Day of Mourning.

A small ceremony was held at 3:30 p.m. at the Amherst police station where SSgt. Scott White lowered the Canadian Flag to mark the solemn occasion.

The National Day of Mourning is held annually on April 28. It is dedicated to remembering those who suffered work-related illnesses, lost their lives or were injured on the job.

The day also gives employers and employees an opportunity to reflect on workplace health and safety and renew their commitment to improving on-the-job health and safety.2018027 mourning dayB

Twenty-one Nova Scotians workers died in 2017. Five of those were caused by traumatic injuries in the workplace and 16 were the result of health conditions and occupational disease. So far in 2018, there have been four on-the-job fatalities.Statistics provided by the province indicate 24,000 Nova Scotians were injured on the job in 2017. About 5,900 were injured seriously enough to lose time from work.

The latest national statistics, compiled by the Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada from data collected in 2016, indicate 905 Canadians died while at work that year. In addition, there were 241,508 claims accepted for lost time due to work-related injury or disease.

The federal government passed the Workers Mourning Day Act in 1991. The act was enacted eight years after the Canadian Labour Congress launched the day of remembrance.

Since then, the Day of Mourning has spread to about 100 countries around the world and is recognized as Workers’ Memorial Day. It is also recognized as International Workers’ Memorial Day by the International Labour Organization and the International Trade Union Confederation.

The flags in Amherst are to remain at half-mast until 8 a.m. on April 30.