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WHEREAS, Virginia workers are the backbone of our robust economy; and
WHEREAS, every worker fatality is a devastating tragedy and an unmitigated loss; and
WHEREAS, the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry investigated fifty-six work-related fatalities last year alone; and
WHEREAS, the COVID-19 pandemic presented a tremendous challenge in keeping Virginia workers safe and contributed to over half of the 2020 workplace fatalities; and
WHEREAS, in addition to the personal stresses caused by the pandemic, workers are forced to face new anxieties about the safety of their workplace; and
WHEREAS, responsible businesses have to navigate the devastating financial impacts of a worker fatality including workers’ compensation, production downtime, investigation, training, and legal fees; and
WHEREAS, families are often emotionally and financially devastated by the loss; and
WHEREAS, every Virginian has the right to return home safely at the end of each day; and
WHEREAS, together, we can increase workplace safety and build a better future for Virginia’s workers;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize April 28, 2021, as VIRGINIA WORKERS’ MEMORIAL DAY in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.