Worker Memorial Day is April 28, a day when we remember workers who have lost their lives providing goods (buildings, roads, food, clothing, etc) and services (caring for our children, elderly and disabled, cleaning our spaces, mowing our lawns, cutting our hair etc) for “the rest of us.” What does God require of us to provide justice for workers? A living wage is critical, but safety for workers is imperative.
Laws and regulations for worker safety and funding for inspectors to enforce those laws are key requirements for justice in the working environment. How many worker deaths were due to employers not following current rules and regulations? How many industries have been inspected but not fined in a way to make it worth following the rules? Look at the headlines:
Am I my neighbors’ keeper? And what does God require of us? To be careful what we fund and support with our personal and government money? To ask questions of our Department of Labor to support enforcement of worker safety rules? To insist that our elected leaders make strong worker safety rules?
Working for justice is not an option in our Christian mandate — it is what God requires of us. Proverbs 6 tells us that God hates “hands that shed innocent blood.” When workers die because we have been more concerned with price and profit than worker safety, are we “hands that shed innocent blood?” When we allow our Departments of Labor to turn blind eyes on rules that do exist, are we “hands that shed innocent blood”? When we allow our legislature to make laws for the benefit of industry not the workers, are we “hands that shed innocent blood?”
May God have mercy on us as we remember those who have died while working in our state and nation. May our repentance show us a better way to do what God requires as we seek justice for workers.
Join us on April 28 at 10 a.m. at Bicentennial Mall in Raleigh as we remember those who have lost their lives while working.