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A yearbook with a warning: Workplace Murders Almanac

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20.03.2017
There’s an almanac on my desk that makes me ponder and very sad every year. It is an inventory that generates pain. It is the list of those who have lost their lives on the job over the past year.

It is the list of workers who have died and left their loved ones in pain. How they have died and the inadequacy of the measures taken to prevent these deaths are listed in the almanac. There are mothers, fathers, spouses, brothers and sisters and children of the deceased, all in tears.

The almanac I was reading is the “İş Cinayetleri Almanağı 2016” (Workplace Murders Almanac 2016).

There is a dedication at the beginning of the book: “This is dedicated to the workers who lost their lives at workplace murders, to lawyer Kamil Kirman who died in 2009, who was one of the lawyers in the Davutpaşa case where an explosion killed 21 workers and injured 117, and to the designer of our almanac, our brother at the Support Group for Those In Search of Justice, Mahir Sezer, to the veterans among the workers’ families fighting for justice…”

In their preface, the “Adalet Arayana Destek Grubu” (The Support Group for Those In Search of Justice) say they wish such almanacs never existed: “Unfortunately, this year you again have the new Workplace Murders Almanac in front of you. We wish there were no murder-like deaths in workplaces in Turkey; we wish, in turn, that we were not preparing an almanac, but our wishes are not coming true.”

The cover has a photograph from the construction sector, the one that has the highest number of deaths.
A word from the families reflects the insensitivity: “We are the families and friends of workers who have lost their lives in workplace murder-like deaths and who are searching for justice. Unless it happens to you or unless the ember falls right into the center of your house, one is unfortunately not aware of the fact that dozens of workers lose their lives every day in our........

© Hürriyet Daily News