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Labour council goes virtual for National Day of Mourning ceremony

Ceremonies are being held a little differently these days.

The City of Campbell River and the Campbell River, Courtenay and District Labour Council went virtual for Tuesday’s Day of Mourning ceremony.

“It was very much a different day,” says Campbell River Safety Advisor Dave Lovely. “Normally, we have a ceremony that is primarily attended by city staff. Over the last number of years, we’ve been opening it more and more to the public.”

Every year, workers, friends and families gather at Day of Mourning ceremonies across the country.

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It’s all in an effort to recognize workers killed or injured on the job.

To limit the spread of COVID-19, organizers decided to stray away from usual ceremony practices and take to Facebook Live.

“This year with COVID-19, we had to approach it very differently,” Lovely says. “It was more of a virtual ceremony. There were just a few of us down at Frank James Park in front of the worker memorial.”

While maintaining the proper physical distance, single representatives from both the city and the labour council placed wreaths on the memorial stone.

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Lovely thinks it’s important to remember Frank James Park was named after a city employee who was killed on the job many years ago.

“One of the things we’ve always done at the Day of Mourning ceremony is remember him. But, we also remember those workers throughout the province who have died either from injury or industrial disease.”

City facilities fly flags at half-mast in acknowledgement of the Day of Mourning.

Last year, 140 workers in B.C. lost their lives due to work-related injury, illness or disease.

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To watch this year’s ceremony, click here.

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