Plaque will honour Grant, and worker safety

To be installed in east Maple Ridge in June

A brass plaque memorial titled Grant’s Law, in honour of Grant De Patie will be installed near the gas station where the Maple Ridge man was killed more than a decade ago.

The BC Federation of Labour’s young workers’ committee created the plaque, Maple Ridge council heard Tuesday.

De Patie was 24 when he was dragged to death under a motor vehicle during a gas-and-dash at the gas station at Dewdney Trunk Road and 248th Street, in 2005.

Milena Kollay, with MoveUP, told council that young workers have the highest risk of injury in the workplace because of inexperience. “Young people are vulnerable to lack of orientation, training, inexperience and pressure to get the job done at any cost. We can, and must do more to keep young workers safe,” Kollay said.

Alex Gendron, with the United Steel Workers, said the plaque will serve to inspire others to fight for workplace safety.

The De Patie family fought to get Grant’s Law passed in B.C. in 2007, which requires safety measures for employees working alone.

The law made British Columbia the first province in Canada to make drivers pay before they pump gas, and included provisions to add barriers and to require two workers for those on retail graveyard shifts.

Later, WorkSafeBC amended the regulations to allow employers a third option.

Doug De Patie lobbied governments across Canada to pass similar legislation and said Alberta passed a similar law in 2018, after four or five deaths from gas-and-dash incidents.

Darnell Darcy Pratt pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the case, and was sentenced to nine years in prison. He died last in February at age 30 in New Westminster. It came up in court that Pratt was believed to have had fetal alcohol spectrum disorder.



pmelnychuk@mapleridgenews.com

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