I stand in solidarity with workers in Ontario and across Canada as we collectively mark an especially solemn and painful National Day of Mourning.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, essential front line workers have put their bodies on the line to ensure that community members are taken care of and have access to the essentials.
Too many workers have done their jobs without access to proper protection. Workers have been infected at work, become sick, and today we mourn the loss of workers who have died from this terrible virus.
Today we celebrate the recent legal victory of the Ontario Nurses Association. They fought for the right to have access to and to wear personal protective equipment, including N95 masks. We must celebrate their victory and also mourn that our nurses had to fight during a global pandemic for access to PPE. And we cannot forget the Personal Support Workers who continue to fight to get access to PPE as they support seniors in Long-Term Care and support folks through home care.
We also recognize some of Canada's most vulnerable workers: migrant workers. They are vital to our food chain and food supply yet their working conditions are often less than ideal. During the COVID-19 pandemic, most do not have proper accommodations to self-isolate or access to PPE.
Today I'm thinking of the former Rubber Workers and their families, as WSIB claims for occupational illness continue to be denied, leaving workers and their widows unsupported during their time of need.
Ontario, our work towards safe and fair workplaces is far from over. Today I recommit to the fight alongside my union siblings, and will be joining the Waterloo Regional Labour Council for their 10:30 AM Day of Mourning Event via their Facebook page. I hope you will tune in too.