How much is a life worth? It’s not an easy question, but surely the life of this worker, killed by a paper making company, is worth more than a measly $230,000. I’m sure the top executives get paid more than that in a freaking year. I think it’s a little bit insulting to his family, including his daughter who was only 6 weeks old at the time, and workers in general.
You’ve often heard me denounce CEO salaries as way too high, and compared them to the meagre wages of the average worker, but it’s even more enraging when their salaries still surpass what they have to pay when a worker dies because of unsafe working conditions because safety for workers cuts into profits.
I don’t have exact number, but easily over one hundred workers are killed each year in Australia at work, usually due to unsafe working conditions. We’ve all heard the stories about bosses discouraging workers from putting on harnesses because it takes too long, and therefore costs too much money. We all know the insulting low fines given to James Hardy for murdering workers by making them work with asbestos.
Another example that comes to mind is from the research I did on abattoirs in America for a short story. The abattoir bosses have pushed production up so high that cattle go through the slaughtering process conscious because stunners aren’t given enough time to be accurate. This results in cattle feeling every bit of pain as they’re slaughtered and often results in them kicking workers as the hang from hooks, injuring them and sometimes killing them.
My conclusion? Capitalism kills workers in order to make profit.
capitalism, workplace deaths, murder, working class