healthy, and help develop the economy of the future, I encourage all Americans to visit www.WhiteHouse.Gov/EarthDay to learn ways to protect and preserve our environment for centuries to come.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 22, 2011, as Earth Day. I encourage all Americans to participate in service programs and activities that will protect our environment and contribute to a prosperous, healthy, and sustainable future.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-second day of April, in the year of our Lord two thousand eleven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fifth.
'Proclamation 8658 of April 27, 2011
Workers Memorial Day, 2011
By the President of the United States of America
Every year in America, nearly four million workers suffer an occupational injury or illness, and thousands die from work-related injuries. These preventable tragedies disable workers, devastate families, and erode our economy. On Workers Memorial Day, we celebrate the improvements in American workplaces and remember those who have been injured, sickened, or killed on the job. This year, we also recognize the 40th anniversary of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and we pay tribute to all those who have dedicated their lives to ensuring safety in the workplace.
The protections working Americans enjoy today were not easily gained. They had to be won by generations of courageous men and women, fighting to secure decent working conditions, standing up for those most vulnerable, and sometimes risking their own economic security and lives. One century ago in New York City, nearly 150 young garment workers either burned or jumped to their deaths when a fire ignited in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory. This senseless tragedy inspired a movement, calling Americans to pay attention to workplace conditions and bestowing a new relevance on the importance of unions. Organized labor has continued to give voice to millions of working men and women by representing their views and fighting for good working conditions and fair wages.
Until 1970, many Americans still did not have the legal right to a safe workplace, and many employers were not legally obligated to control hazards. The Federal Coal Mine Health and Safety Act of 1969 and the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 fundamentally changed American workplaces. These laws provided workers the right to safe and healthy workplaces, ensured workers were protected from dangerous conditions, and provided protections to employees who reported safety and health hazards.