PRESS RELEASE: On the National Day of Mourning, Workers Demand Better on Occupational Health & Safety

Four years of UCP government have threatened Alberta workers’ safety: Kuprys

EDMONTON – Today, workers across Alberta will gather to commemorate the National Day of Mourning for Persons Killed or Injured in the Workplace, a day dedicated to acknowledging those who have died or been injured on the job over the previous year. The Alberta Federation of Labour (AFL) secretary treasurer Karen Kuprys noted that the UCP government has not made workers safer on the job.

“On this day, we mourn the dead and fight for the living,” said Kuprys. “And the UCP’s term in government proves that workers need to demand better on workplace health and safety in this upcoming provincial election.”

In 2020, the UCP pushed through disastrous legislation that stripped many Alberta workers of their health and dental coverage and allowed employers to not re-hire recovered injured workers. The bill also included transitioning the services provided by the Medical Panels Office to the Appeals Commission, which removed benefit of the doubt for workers at the level of a medical panel review. Finally, their legislation ended the Fair Practices Office which provided free and unbiased assistance to injured workers struggling to navigate the WCB’s bureaucracy.

“Danielle Smith hasn’t improved the situation either,” said Kuprys. “She has a responsibility to Albertans to strengthen systems to keep workers safe and provide supports for those that are injured.”

“When Danielle Smith took over the Premier’s office, she neglected to assign responsibility over occupational health and safety or labour code oversight to a cabinet minister,” added Kuprys. “She has also embraced anti-masking and anti-vaccination views that endanger workers from the spread of COVID-19.”


John Ashton
Director of Communications, AFL