Vancouver - The Employee Action and Rights Network (EARN) and the BC Federation of Labour’s Young Workers’ Committee are holding an overnight ‘sit-in’ to mark the day the BC Liberal government put vulnerable workers at risk by weakening Grant’s Law.
“It has been three years since the government changed Grant’s Law and weakened the requirements to keep workers safe. We are here to mark this shameful day and to raise awareness of the dangers workers face when working alone at night,” said Caitlin Davidson-King, Chairperson of the BCFED Young Workers’ Committee. “It is unacceptable for the government and employers to put profit ahead of workers’ safety.”
For the third year, EARN activists and young workers are gathered in front of a Mac’s Convenience Store tonight to demand government reinstate Grant’s Law and bring back the legislation requiring two workers to be on shift together or to have a barrier in place to protect workers during late night hours.
Grant’s Law was named after 24-year old Grant DePatie, a gas station attendant who died at work due to a gas and dash incident. However, on April 15, 2012, the BC Liberal government bowed to pressure from the business community, including Mac’s Convenient Stores, and removed specific safety requirements from Grant’s Law.
“Since Grant’s death, the Liberal government has broken their promise to improve safety for late night workers,” said Davidson-King. “Tonight’s ‘sit-in’ is to show solidarity with vulnerable workers across the province and to remind the government of their commitment.”
“Clearly tragedy is not enough for the BC Liberal government to do the right thing and protect workers, no matter what time of day or night they work,” said Irene Lanzinger, President of the BC Federation of Labour. “No workers should be put in harm’s way. The government has an obligation to set the rules so every worker can come home safe.”
What: Annual Grant’s Law ‘sit-in’
Where: Mac’s Convenience Store, 601 East Broadway (Broadway and Fraser)
When: 8:00 pm to 6:00 am, press conference at 8:00 pm
Media contact: Jaime Matten 604-561-2663