Nova Scotians Honour Workers and Families on Day of Mourning (Apr 28/21)

Message from Hon. Lena Metlege Diab, Minister of Labour and Advanced Education

Message from Stuart MacLean, CEO WCB Nova Scotia

Messages from:
Jason MacLean, NSFL First Vice-President
Danny Cavanagh, President of the Nova Scotia Federation of Labour
Allen Martin from the Westray Families Group
Debbie Richardson, President of the Halifax-Dartmouth and District Labour Council
Gary Burrill, Leader of the Nova Scotia New Democratic Party


Each year on April 28, Nova Scotians honour lives lost and those who were injured or suffered illness due to their work, as part of the national Day of Mourning.  

It is also a time for Nova Scotia to renew its commitment to improving occupational health and safety across the province.

“Today is about paying tribute to those who have been injured or lost their lives on the job, as well as honouring their families, loved ones and colleagues who’ve been affected by these tragedies,” said Minister of Labour and Advanced Education, Lena Metlege Diab. “This day also serves as a stark reminder that more work must be done in our vow to improve workplace health and safety in Nova Scotia.”

To honour those Nova Scotians who have been impacted, all provincial flags at Province House will be lowered to half-mast. 

As an act of remembrance and a reminder to work safely, employers are encouraged to hold a moment of silence at 11 a.m. 

“A person’s life should not be at risk when they are at work. Every workplace death or injury is preventable and today and every day we rededicate ourselves to continue to work with all stakeholders to prevent workplace injuries and fatalities to ensure every Nova Scotian comes home from work, injury-free.”
     - Danny Cavanagh, president, Nova Scotia Federation of Labour 

“Today we honour those who have died, those who have been injured and those who contracted an occupational illness at work. For the families that mourn their loved ones lost to workplace tragedy, we stand with you and we recommit to doing all we can to keep Nova Scotians safe at work.”
     - Stuart MacLean, CEO, Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia

Quick Facts: 
-- in 2020, 18 Nova Scotians died from acute traumatic injuries on the job, the highest the province has seen since 2008. There were also 14 fatalities classified as chronic – seven related to occupational diseases and seven caused by health-related issues, such as heart attacks

-- the Department of Labour and Advanced Education and Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia work closely with industry and other partners to promote workplace safety. Together, the organizations, along with safety associations, conduct workplace visits and education and awareness campaigns

Additional Resources: 

Visit Day of Mourning for more information about the national Day of Mourning

For messages of condolences visit the Day of Mourning Facebook page 

Threads of Life - You can also take part in a virtual event presented by Threads of Life who will post a candle lighting video on their Facebook page and YouTube channel at 9:30 a.m., April 28. As well, Threads of Life family members have shared their personal Day of Mourning stories in brief videos on their website. 

Nova Scotia Federation of Labour

For workplace safety concerns or issues, contact: 1-800-9LABOUR 


Media Contact:   Khalehla Perrault
                           Department of Labour and Advanced Education 
                           Cell: 902-717-3193

                           Joan Wark
                           Nova Scotia Federation of Labour 

                           Cindy Porter
                           Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia