On April 28, International Workers Memorial Day, we remember workers who were killed at work and recommit to the struggle for safe and healthy workplaces.
Every year 2.78 million people die from work-related causes – that’s one person every 12 seconds.
This year the IUF will work together with sister global unions and unions around the world to demand that occupational health and safety (OHS) becomes a fundamental right at work by ensuring that it is included amongst the ILO’s core Conventions.
The IUF is committed to fighting for OHS throughout the food chain – from agriculture to food processing to hospitality. In 2022 we are highlighting the poor occupational health and safety conditions in the fast food sector. Across the globe, fast food workers are rising up to demand safe and healthy workplaces free from sexual harassment, physical abuse, oil burns and other health and safety hazards.
- Workers at the fast food restaurant Wendy’s in Weaverville, North Carolina, USA, began striking on April 23 to demand the dismissal of their manager for his repeated and ongoing physical and sexual abuse of the workers
- Throughout the pandemic with many fast food chains open around the world, fast food workers risked their health working in kitchens where physical distancing was impossible and personal protective equipment not always provided
- The pandemic and the prevalence of precarious work have exacerbated the risks. Gender based violence and the risk of COVID-19 infection are two significant workplace hazards.
Bertha Bradley, a fast food worker from Durham, North Carolina, stated, “Union rights provide workers with dignity and respect in the workplace. My health has always been essential, but to Wendy’s it seems expendable.”