PRESS RELEASE (April 25, 2019) — According to a new report released today by the AFL-CIO, Iowa had the 36 highest rate of workplace deaths. This analysis, based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, shows that, at least, 26 Iowa workers lost their lives due to on-the-job injuries.
Nationally, workplace-violence is now the second-leading cause of workplace death, accounting for 807 workplace deaths, including 458 homicides. For the 3rd year in a row, workplace-violence injuries increased, with nearly 29,000 workers suffering serious violence-related injuries due to assault on the job. Yet, even as violence increases in the workplace, the Trump administration has sidelined developing and issuing an OSHA workplace violence standard.
“This year’s report is yet another reminder of the dangers facing working people in Iowa every single day,” said Ken Sagar, President Iowa Federation of Labor. “Iowans deserve better. We have a right to a safe workplace and a voice on the job. What’s more, we deserve leaders in Iowa and Washington who will stand up for those rights. It’s time for change, and working people are joining together to secure the economic rights and dignity that we’ve earned.”
Nationally, 5,147 American workers died on the job in 2017, a small decrease from deaths the previous year. Another estimated 95,000 died from occupational-diseases, meaning approximately 275 workers died each day from preventable, hazardous workplace conditions. Overall, the national job-fatality rate was 3.5 per 100,000, workers down slightly from 3.6 in 2016.
The report, titled “Death on the Job. The Toll of Neglect” marks the 28th year the AFL-CIO has produced its findings on the state of safety and health protections for workers within the United States. The report shows the highest workplace fatality rates are in Alaska (10.2 per 100,000 workers), North Dakota (10.1), Wyoming (7.7), West Virginia (7.4) and South Dakota (7.3).
Other report highlights show that Latino workers continue to be at increased risk of job-death, and that the number of Latino worker deaths increased in 2017 to 903 from 879. Deaths among older workers also increased; workers 65 or older have nearly three times the risk of dying on the job as workers overall. Construction, transportation, and agriculture industries remain among the most dangerous. In 2017, 917 construction workers were killed — the highest total of any sector. Agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting was the most dangerous industry sector, with a fatality-ate of 23.0 per 100,000 workers.
There are numerous events taking place all over Iowa over a four day window (April 26 -29). The list of those who have died while at work and the information about all the Iowa events can be found by clicking the link below.