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Remembering Essential Workers on Workers Memorial Day

April 28, 2021

April 28 is Workers’ Memorial Day and workers in the U.S. and around the world honor the memory of the thousands who have been killed on the job and the millions of workers who have suffered from injuries, sickness or diseases in their places of work.

Workers’ Memorial Day marks the anniversary of the Occupational Safety and Health Act as well as the formation of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which is in charge of ensuring safe and healthy working conditions for all working Americans.

This year, we observe Workers’ Memorial Day and honor all members of our union family who were impacted and died as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Throughout the pandemic, essential frontline workers have helped to keep the country afloat while facing unsafe conditions and risking their health and lives. 

UFCW has confirmed that COVID-19 continues to threaten essential food workers nationwide. According to new UFCW estimates, among the union’s members nationwide, there have already been at least 456 frontline worker deaths and at least 91,400 frontline workers infected or exposed.

America’s grocery workers have been bravely putting their health at risk on the frontlines of COVID-19 every day to keep our communities fed. The latest mass shootings in grocery stores in Colorado and New York are a tragic reminder that the pandemic is not the only threat these working Americans face – the never-ending epidemic of gun violence threatens workers’ lives, and continues to impact more and more workplaces.

As we remember all of America’s brave frontline workers, across every industry, who have died from COVID-19 and gun violence,  the UFCW stands with workers who are fighting to uphold their basic rights – including safe jobs, workplace fairness and collective bargaining.