Day of Mourning statements from Ministry, Chief Prevention Officer and Prevention Council Members

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Statement on the Day of Mourning by Chief Prevention Officer and Assistant Deputy Minister, Operations Division, Ministry of Labour Training and Skills Development

Every year on April 28, the Day of Mourning, we pay tribute to the workers who have lost their lives, become ill or been injured due to work-related incidents. 

We also renew our steadfast commitment to keeping workers healthy and safe on the job.

Today, Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development, said that the value and vulnerability of our workers has become all the more apparent on this year’s Day of Mourning, as Ontario and the rest of the world grapples with the COVID-19 outbreak. We share this sentiment. There is a special place in our hearts for any Ontario worker who may have been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. During these challenging times, we owe them an extra debt of gratitude.  

We encourage all Ontarians to renew their resolve to prevent workplace tragedies. Workplace health and safety is a shared responsibility. We must work together – employers, supervisors, workers and government – to eliminate workplace hazards that could harm us, our colleagues and our loved ones. 

Today, we ask all Ontario residents to reflect on those workers who have needlessly died or suffered injuries or illness, and to join us in preventing others from suffering similarly. Together we must eliminate the terrible human toll that workplace incidents exact and create a better future for Ontario’s workers. 

Ron Kelusky, Chief Prevention Officer
Jody Young, Assistant Deputy Minister, Operations Division, 
Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development


Prevention Council Statement on the Day of Mourning

On April 28, the Day of Mourning, we pay respect to the workers who have lost their lives and their loved ones in workplace fatalities, and those who have been injured or become ill because of their work. 

As members of Ontario’s Prevention Council, our role is to ensure our industries and our government continue to make the elimination of occupational illnesses, injuries and fatalities a top priority. 

As leaders in occupational health and safety, we know the way to keep improving workplace safety is through training, awareness, building strong internal responsibility systems (IRS) and wholeheartedly committing to occupational health and safety in every sector, for every task, every day.

This year, as we face the unprecedented challenges brought on by the COVID-19 outbreak, worker safety is more important than ever. Those who have been or may yet be affected by the outbreak are in our hearts and minds. 

As always, we remain committed to making health and safety a top priority for all people, workers, employers, and government. Only then will we be able to achieve our goal of eliminating preventable incidents and illnesses in the workplace. 

Prevention Council Members

Blair Allin
National Health and Safety Representative, International Brotherhood of Boilermakers

Dan Bonnar
Firefighter, Ontario Professional Firefighters Association

Patrick Bourgeois (Vice-Chair)
Construction Manager, Peter Kiewit Sons ULC

John Bourke
Business Manager/Financial Secretary, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers 
Michael Dauncey
Corporate Health and Safety Manager, Mattamy Homes

Colin de Raaf 
Director of Training, CLAC 

Daniel Fleming 
Manager, Training and Development GTA, NORCAT

Erin Oliver (Chair)
Vice President of Health, Safety and Sustainability, Modern Niagara Group Inc.

Patricia Pereira Janicas
Employee, Kenaidan Contracting Ltd

Peter Rowe
Ontario Petroleum Institute 

Frank Saunders
Vice President of Nuclear Oversight and Regulatory Affairs, Bruce Power

James St. John
Business Manager/Financial Secretary, Central Ontario Building Trades 

Roger Tickner
President, Tickner and Associates Inc.

Susanna Zagar
Chief Strategy and Analytics Officer, Workplace Safety and Insurance Board



April 28 Day of Mourning