Five CUPE members died at work in the last year. It is always with great sadness that our union reports these deaths because we know that all fatalities are preventable.
Sister Kim Weitzel, 44 years old, was a paramedic in Kimberley, B.C., who died on May 17 while trying to save two mine technicians who had collapsed at the Sullivan mine.
Brother Shawn Currier, 21 years old, also a paramedic in Kimberley, B.C., worked with Weitzel. Currier died while trying to save Weitzel and the two mine technicians. Both paramedics died after collapsing in an oxygen-deficient sampling shed.
Brother Jason Negrich, 32 years old, was a seasonal labourer with the City of Dauphin, Manitoba. Negrich died on August 14 from severe head trauma due to a fall.
Brother Alain Simard, 28 years old, was an electrical technician with Hydro-Quebec who died on October 12 while servicing a turbine at Hydro-Quebec’s Rapide-7 power plant at a dam in the Abitibi region. Simard died after allegedly falling into the turbine.
Brother Frederick Michael (Mike) Bonvie, 40 years old, was an operator with New Glasgow and Westville’s public works department in Nova Scotia. Bonvie died October 26 while installing a sewer line after the walls of the trench he was working in collapsed. He had only been on the job for four days.
CUPE calls on governments to enforce their respective health and safety legislation and we call on employers to respect the lives and dignity of CUPE members and all working people.