Worker safety advocates and family members gathered in Cheyenne Monday morning to commemorate Workers’ Memorial Day. The day remembers those who have been killed or injured while on the job.
Dan Neal with the Equality State Policy Center organized the event.
“Started it by ringing a bell 35 separate times to remember the 35 workers who died on the job in Wyoming in 2012.”
That’s up by three from 2011 and the highest number in five years. Wyoming is traditionally one of the national leaders in workplace deaths. Neal says while various Wyoming industry coalitions and safety groups have been formed to address the issue, more needs to be done.
“Industry itself has to redouble its efforts to make clear to everyone that we’re tired of seeing all these people killed and maimed in this state. Let’s make safety the priority."
Neal also says the state needs to hire more compliance inspectors and issue larger fines to violators. The Legislature did increase funding for safety inspectors in 2012 and created a safety improvement fund that businesses can draw on for voluntary measures.