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Workers Memorial Day – little to show for it

Workers Memorial Day – little to show for it from government

At a time when we are killing one worker a week we need to make sure we are doing everything possible to get attitudes and workplace culture right, something the government's contradictory law changes are unlikely to do, Labour's spokesperson on Labour issues Andrew Little says.

“Workers' Memorial Day is observed worldwide on 28 April to remember those who have died at work and to reflect on what more is needed to prevent workplace death and injury.

"Workplace regulation has a vital role to play in shaping culture and attitudes to health and safety, and ultimately the best health and safety performance comes down to workers having the knowledge and confidence to challenge unsafe practices, including by management.

"Although the Government has put up a health and safety bill with improved worker participation, it will be totally meaningless alongside its employment law changes which are designed to shut down the voice of workers and give employers unilateral powers.

"Minister of Labour Simon Bridges is deluded if he thinks the combination of these law changes, both currently going through Parliament, is going to lead to a better health and safety culture, saving more lives and preventing more injuries.

"I have personally seen the harrowing aftermath of workplace deaths and no family should go through the turmoil of seeing one of their own leave for work and never return because of poor workplace practices.

"Labour is committed to ensuring workers' right to have a say on health and safety and refuse to do unsafe work is properly protected, and that our health and safety regulation is a properly tri-partite one,” says Andrew Little.


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