“It’s easy to advocate for cheaper coffins when you don’t have to face the families of dead workers that will lie in them”

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

The BC Building Trades was offended and outraged to hear the BC Liberal government announce it would redirect tens of millions of dollars in funds to employers and away from injured workers.

“We face one of the highest injury rates in the construction industry,” said Tom Sigurdson. Executive Director of the BC Building Trades. “This money should be going to injured workers, their families and prevention programs.”

An average of 27 construction workers die every year in BC from trauma and exposures. Last year, 29 construction workers lost their lives in British Columbia (18 from trauma and 11 from exposures).

“This announcement effectively says that the government is comfortable with that level of fatalities. They are saying the system is working at peak efficiency and not one penny more should go towards changing a goddamn thing,” said Sigurdson.

This “surplus” was only made possible through a series of deep and significant changes to the workers’ compensation system by the BC Liberal government that have compromised worker health & safety and the financial stability of injured workers. These changes include:

• approved deep cuts in employer premiums that have deprived the workers of millions and reduced workplace safety regulations and benefits for injured workers;

• reduced benefits from 75% of gross income to 90% of net income; lowering how much workers receive in compensation for their injury;

“This announcement is a betrayal to every injured worker and their family,” concluded Sigurdson. “It’s easy to advocate for cheaper coffins when you don’t have to face the families of the dead workers that will lie in them.”

For More Information: 

Contact the BC Building Trades office
(778) 397-2220

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BC Building Trades

Monday – Friday | 8:30am – 4:30pm | closed holidays
phone: (778) 397-2220 | fax: (778) 397-2250
email: info(-at-)bcbuildingtrades.org

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