The speakers were:

  • Brian Boyd, VTHC Secretary
  • Michael Borowick, ACTU Assistant Secretary
  • Meredith Peace, AEU Vic Secretary
  • Performance by The Trade Union Choir

This year the international theme was 'Protecting workers around the world through strong regulation, enforcement and union rights'.


Workers Memorial Day (WMD) is an international day that unions, workers and their families and communities around the world join together to remember those who have been killed or injured at work, and to fight for the living. Each year an international theme is chosen

History of WMD

Workers Memorial Day was started by Canadian Unions in 1984. By 1996, it was an international day. Australian unions have marked the day since 1997.

In 2004 Victorian Unions adopted the canary as the symbol of this day (first adopted by Canadian Unions).

Why we Have WMD

Globally, we remember the 2 million workers who die, the 1.2 million who are injured and the 160 million who fall ill each year from unsafe, unhealthy or unsustainable work and workplaces.

In Australia: Workers bear the cost of hazardous work It is workers, not employers, who overwhelmingly bear the costs of workplace injuries and diseases, an official Australian report has shown. The report by Safe Work Australia revealed three quarters of the costs of workplace injuries and diseases is borne by the injured workers themselves, with just 5 per cent borne by employers. (see Safe Work Australia Report).