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Apr. 19, 2007

Governor and L&I to honor fallen workers April 25

TUMWATER — Gov. Chris Gregoire and the Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) will honor the memories of more than 100 workers who died as a result of job-related injuries or illnesses in Washington in 2006 at a Worker Memorial Day ceremony Wednesday, April 25.

The 2 p.m. ceremony at L&I headquarters in Tumwater is Washington’s official Worker Memorial Day commemoration and is one of many held in communities across the nation. L&I has hosted a ceremony for 14 years recognizing and honoring fallen workers.

“Worker Memorial Day is a somber reminder of the importance of workplace safety and health. Where workplace hazards exist, workers are at risk,” said L&I Director Judy Schurke. “There’s no better way to honor these workers than by dedicating ourselves to making sure these tragedies don’t happen again.”

Schurke will emcee and introduce remarks by Gov. Gregoire, Rick Bender of the Washington State Labor Council, Don Brunell of the Association of Washington Business and Therese Baxter of the Washington Self-Insurers Association.

Family members of workers who died in 2006 have been invited, and the observance is open to the public. The centerpiece of the ceremony is a reading of the names of the workers, accompanied by bell ringers from the Washington State Council of Firefighters.

Following the one-hour ceremony, there will be a dedication of a new worker memorial bell sculpture on the grounds of the L&I building. The brass bell was commissioned and donated by the Washington State Building and Construction Trades Council.

L&I’s headquarters is at 7273 Linderson Way S.W. in Tumwater (exit 101 from Interstate 5).

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For media information: Elaine Fischer, L&I, 360-902-5413 or nele235@LNI.wa.gov, or visit the L&I News and Media Center at www.LNI.wa.gov/News

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