Mission: Zero has travelled a long road over the past few years. The initiative started as a goal to reduce workplace injuries in Saskatchewan, but has grown to become a philosophy that applies not only at work, but at home, at play, on our roads, and on our farms and ranches, says Gord Moker, CEO of Safe Saskatchewan.
“In the workplace in Saskatchewan, the injury rate has come down steadily since its all-time high in 2002 — that is good news! But the injury rate outside of Saskatchewan workplaces is twice as high,” Moker says.
As a nod toward their expanded vision for Mission: Zero, Safe Saskatchewan has updated the wrap on their official vehicle. The Mission:Zero logo is big and bright and prominently featured, sending a clear message to anyone who sees it.
“They wanted to keep it relatively clean so that people would easily understand who they were,” says Darleen Nicol, president and owner of Imagination Ink, the company that designed the vehicle wrap. “This fits their purpose; they’re trying to put out a message, to let people know about their mission.”
Safe Saskatchewan is a non-profit organization that raises awareness of the province’s unintentional injury epidemic, and coordinates provincial injury prevention initiatives. Mission:Zero is one of these initiatives, with the goal of building a province in which the only acceptable number of injuries is zero.
Saskatchewan has one of the highest overall injury rates in Canada. Moker believes this high injury rate is partly due to culture that has evolved from our agricultural roots.
“I’ve always referred to it as a ‘get ‘er done’ kind of attitude, which is a good thing in most cases, but when it comes to injuries in our province, it’s the ‘get ‘er done at all costs’ that’s not acceptable,” he says.
Moker says he can already see the shift happening. The proof is in the Saskatchewan Health and Leadership Charter, another initiative that Safe Saskatchewan oversees. The Charter is a public commitment made by government, business, union, and community leaders to advance health and safety in the workplace and at home, and to work towards establishing injury prevention as a core value.
Thus far, 382 leaders have signed the Charter, and more join each year at Safe Saskatchewan’s annual Charter event.
“When we consider those organizations and those leaders who have signed the Charter, and you take into account their employees and their family members, we have close to 350,000 people influenced by the Charter, and Mission: Zero” says Moker.
Saskatchewan community leaders can join the Health and Safety Leadership Charter by contacting Safe Saskatchewan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 306.352.3810. And anyone can make a difference by being aware that injury prevention is possible if you know the repercussions of your actions, and you plan in advance to be safe.