IR #99-04
Wednesday, April 28th 1999

Dean Fryer
(415) 703-5050

Governor Davis Proclaims April 28, 1999 As Workers' Memorial Day

SAN FRANCISCO -- Stephen J. Smith, Director of the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) today announced that Governor Davis has proclaimed April 28, 1999 as Workers' Memorial Day, and would like to encourage all citizens of California to remember and pay tribute to those California workers who have lost their lives or were injured on the job.

"On this day, I challenge labor and business leaders to work together with this Administration to develop labor/management injury and illness prevention programs and practices which prevent occupational fatalities, injuries and illnesses in every workplace in California," said Smith.

Events recalling Workers' Memorial Day have been scheduled throughout the state. On Sunday, April 25, the first event was held to honor the workers who died in the Tosco Refinery fire. The workers honored were Rollin Blue (Carpenter's Local 1520), Ricardo Enriquez (Carpenters Local 152), Ernie Pofahl (Paper Allied-Industrial Chemical & Energy Workers, Local 5), and Raynold Rodacker (Iron Workers Local 378), all of whom died in the recent Tosco explosion. Also honored was Michael Glanzman (Paper Allied-Industrial Chemical & Energy Workers, Local 5), who died in the January 1997 Tosco incident. Over 100 people attended, including local religious leaders, labor leaders, and elected representatives, as well as concerned community members, co-workers, friends, and the family.

"For all of us at DIR, especially our staff at Cal/OSHA, this is also a day to reflect on the importance of our work in enforcing occupational safety and health laws," said Smith. "I applaud the vital work done by our Cal/OSHA employees and look forward to finding even more effective ways of achieving the goals of promoting awareness and practices which will ensure safe and healthful working conditions for all working men, women and young workers in California."

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