People gather for prayer at an event for last year's Workers Memorial Day at United Steelworkers Local 105 in Bettendorf.


Quad-City area labor organizations will host Workers Memorial Day ceremonies Friday in Bettendorf and Clinton as part of the national observance.

In Bettendorf, the U.S. Steelworkers Local 105, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers 1379 and Arconic Davenport Works leadership will host a service at noon, Friday, at the USW Local 105 Hall, 880 Devils Glen Road. The doors open at 11 a.m. with lunch served after the service. The event is sponsored by Arconic Davenport Works Joint Safety and Health Committee.

In Clinton, the Great River Area Labor Federation AFL-CIO and Clinton Labor Congress AFL-CIO, will host a ceremony at 1 p.m., Friday, at Riverfront Park, located on Riverview Drive.

The events also honor the two area workers killed on the job in 2016. Willie Holley, 62, of Rock Island, a road construction flagger with Valley Construction, was killed Sept. 1 when he was struck by a car near Blue Grass. Glenn Jones Jr., 60, a railroad switch operator for ADM, Clinton, was killed July 23 when he was struck by a railroad car at the company's switchyard in Clinton. 

The events, which join ceremonies being held around the world, commemorate workers who have died or suffered illness and injuries on the job.

"Workplace safety should be a right for every workers, and we will fiercely fight for workplace protections," Ken Sagar, president of the Iowa Federation of Labor AFL-CIO, said in a news release. "Our hard-working men and women dedicate themselves to their jobs everyday and deserve to return home safely to their loved ones at the end of the day."

The event also will criticize a new U.S. presidential order that states that for every new workplace protection, two existing safeguards must be removed. Sagar said the Clinton event also will emphasize the Trump administration's attempts to roll back or block regulations that protect workers from serious hazards, such as deadly silica dust, chemical explosions and workplace violence. It also will highlight the Iowa Legislature's move to change worker's compensation rights in Iowa.

Brad Greve, USW Local 105 president, which represents union workers at Arconic, said the event honors those workers who have been killed on the job and whose names appear on a memorial stone at the hall. "We also try to re-energize ourselves to prevent injuries and not have any other name go on that stone," he said.

Both events are open to the public, including local workers, families, elected leaders and community members.

Other worker memorial events across Iowa will be held in Cedar Rapids, Council Bluffs, Des Moines, Dubuque, Keokuk, Iowa City, Sioux City and Waterloo.