Welcome to the website of the Canadian Injured Workers Association of Alberta.
Are you looking for videos from our events? Information about our current and past actions? Visit How to Use This Site.
News from Alberta will be updated on this main page. We also have news pages for B.C. and Ontario that are updated regularly.
The Canadian Injured Workers Association of Alberta would like to thank the Alberta Federation of Labour for their sponsorship of this website.
Thunder Bay & District Injured Workers Support Group
Tuesday, June 6th – Lissa Beaulieu of Thunder Bay Injured Workers will be sharing some of her social media tips and techniques so we look forward to that.
Tuesday, June 13th – Mike Schreiner, Leader of the Ontario Green Party will share the Green Party’s position on the WSIB
Topic: TBDIWSG Tuesday Session
Time: Jun 6, 2023 10:00 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Every week on Tue, until Jun 27, 2023, 4 occurrence(s)
Jun 6, 2023 10:00 AM
Jun 13, 2023 10:00 AM
Jun 20, 2023 10:00 AM
Jun 27, 2023 10:00 AM
Please download and import the following iCalendar (.ics) files to your calendar system.
Join Zoom Meeting
June 1 Injured Workers Day Coverage
NDP Injured Worker & WSIB Critic Lise Vaugeois makes a statement in the House on June 1st
West tables bill designating June 1 Injured Workers Day in Ontario: https://www.thesudburystar.com/news/local-news/west-tables-bill-designating-june-1-injured-workers-day-in-ontario
Read the Declaration: https://www.thunderbay.ca/en/news/injured-workers-day-2023.aspx
TV coverage of Thunder Bay Event: https://twitter.com/PhoenixRizin09/status/1664478189064794114?cn=ZmxleGlibGVfcmVjcw%3D%3D&refsrc=email
Worry over pending WSIB changes: https://kenoraonline.com/articles/worry-over-pending-wsib-changes
From the Ontario Federation of Labour:
Wow. What an Injured Workers Day that was! Here’s some updates, and pictures!
1. We put together an email tool to tell Monte McNaughton to scrap the KPMG report. See here, and RT here.
2. Janice gave an impassioned speech at a press conference on May 31st speaking against the KPMG report, organized by ONIWG and ONDP MPP Lise Vaugeois. See here for tweet, and stay tuned for the video clip to be released next week!
3. Here’s some pictures from Injured Workers Day – feel free to grab and share!: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1-IkM6i_Zb-Xejzff4ks-3eI0hJSIhNUA?usp=sharing
40 stories and Referendum on stopping private hospitals
The 40 stories initiative is now up to nine audio & video stories. Below are a couple of links to view them and find out more. Please share widely.
Sign up to help out on June 1st, Injured Workers’ Day. Your story could be next. Get in touch if you want more info. https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLGTbIqlOl6iZNfEFeeWQkG3ts1qQrPAFD
The Ontario Health Coalition is holding a referendum/vote to try to stop Doug Ford and his Conservative government from opening up private for-profit clinics and hospitals to perform surgeries and diagnostics now done in our public hospitals. We cannot allow this attack on our public medicare system to succeed and we need everyone to VOTE NO in this referendum. You can do that by going to the website- publichospitalvote.ca.
Here are a couple of stories over the last week that might be of interest. You may want to reach out to these reporters and share your story as well. Also, links to the 40 stories websites.
Nicknamed Mr. Safety, my dad was my hero. Tragically, he was killed in a workplace accident
Short clips from the 40 stories project.
Stories from Injured Workers
You can view Janice Martell’s video – a short video of her dad’s story – dedicated to Day of Mourning, here: https://injuredworkersorganize.ca/stories
True toll of work-related death far exceeds WSIB allowed claims – April 24, 2023
Thousands of Ontarians die each year as a result of hazardous exposures at work. Though data published by Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) would have us believe just 220 workers were killed in 2022. Many believe until the true toll of suffering is recognized and widely communicated, we will struggle to secure the workplace and regulatory actions critical to our shared goal of safer, healthier work.
Well in excess of 2,000 Ontarians died last year as a result of traumatic incidents and hazardous exposures at work, according to estimates supported by research evidence.
And even this alarming toll is a conservative estimate according to this same research evidence.
Still, Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) recognized just 220 worker death claims in 2022. Equally troubling, these WSIB death claims are often the default statistic shared when discussing the number of workers killed each year as a result hazardous work.
“This routine of under recognition in many ways is an affront to the suffering of workers, their families and communities,” explains Andrew Mudge, executive director, Workers Health and Safety Centre (WHSC). “Failure to shed light on the true toll of suffering serves only to downplay the collective need to more aggressively pursue safer, healthier work through enhanced regulations, stronger regulatory enforcement and ultimately workplace prevention efforts.”
Under recognition of occupational disease deaths
While most, if not all, traumatic deaths at work get reported to the WSIB, very few deaths caused by occupational disease are reported to or recognized by the WSIB. This is particularly the case for cancer, lung diseases and other chronic illnesses with long latency periods between workplace exposure(s) and disease onset. Consider, for instance, estimates suggesting between 600 and 5,000 Ontarians died in 2022 from work-related cancer alone.
Under recognition of occupational injuries and illnesses
The experiences of workers and research evidence also suggest significant under reporting and recognition of injuries and illnesses including mental injuries, violence, along with COVID-19 and other respiratory infections caused by workplace transmission. Ontario-based and globally recognized, Institute for Work and Health (IWH) has been studying this issue for decades and believe somewhere between 40 and 60 per cent of potentially compensable conditions are typically not reported to the WSIB and other provincial compensation authorities.
Truth be told this Day of Mourning
“We recognize it is not the mandate of the WSIB to capture the true toll of suffering,” explains Mudge. “We also recognize though a more accurate picture of worker deaths, injuries and illnesses must be prioritized and widely communicated.”
Sharing this true toll of suffering is critical to inform the public, government regulators, employers and others of the full impact of unsafe and unhealthy work and lend some urgency to the pursuit of prevention.
“This will be one of our priorities on April 28 as we take a moment to reflect on all lives lost and the many who suffer injury and illness as a result of hazardous workplace exposures,” says Mudge. “Though equally important the Day of Mourning affords us all the opportunity to re-evaluate and recommit to the many priorities we must act on to help workers not only survive, but to thrive.”
April 28 is Canada’s National Day of Mourning to remember workers who have lost their lives or suffered an injury or illness as a result of their work.
To learn more.
WHSC fact sheet A More Accurate Picture of Workers Disability, Disease and Death
WHSC Day of Mourning 2023 resources, including a province-wide event listing
Call: WHSC training services representative in your region.
Email: [email protected]
Connect with and follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube.
Interview with NDP Critic for WSIB & Injured Workers
The Injured Workers Community Legal Clinic’s recommendations on the WSIB’s communicable illnesses draft policy
IWC’s detailed submission and recommendations (available in PDF and DOC formats).
Submission of the OLCWCN (Ontario Legal Clinics’ Workers’ Compensation Network).
Injured Workers Day in Ontario on June 1
I hope you all have June 1st marked in your calendar for Injured Workers Day! It will be the 40th anniversary of the crucial fight.
The planning committee is hoping to feature 40 stories from injured workers. As we all know, sharing experiences is what makes us connect on issues.
If you know of any members or non-unionized workers who could share their story, please contact Francis Pineda from IWC at [email protected]
Stay tuned for more details for June 1st!
All the best,
Director of Health, Safety and Environment
Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL)