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New PSA Project is a GO!

New PSA is a GO – “Casket” Video Project Underway

worker fatality

“Safety isn’t expensive. It’s priceless.”

– Unknown

If you are familiar with the recent efforts of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund, you may recall we were embarking on a new project: the production of a new (our ninth) 30-second PSA (public service announcement) for TV broadcast.

The working title of the PSA was “A New Legacy.”

For a variety of reasons (a downturn in the Alberta economy, not receiving a government grant, the pandemic) we had little success in securing the necessary funds to have that PSA produced.

So back to the drawing board we went.

After some tweaks to the creative concept and a bit of brainstorming, we are pleased to announce the project is ON again!

We are currently working with an animator to have this new PSA produced at a very reasonable production cost. The working title of the PSA is “Casket.” Grim, yes…but so is the reason for creating it in the first place. More on that in a moment.

The PSA will likely be aired around the time of the 20th anniversary of John’s death on September 29th, 2000.

This first PSA will be part of the larger “Casket” video project.

Here is a brief overview of the overall project:

Snapshot: Calgary police officer Const John Petropoulos died in the line of duty on Sept 29th, 2000. John was investigating a break and enter complaint when he stepped through an unmarked false ceiling and fell to his death. There was no safety railing in place to warn him – or anyone else – of the danger.

Since John’s death, nearly 20,000 Canadians have died as the result of a workplace injury or illness. Although this number is staggering, many people are likely unaware of the cumulative – and steadily growing – death toll.

In reality, however, that number is likely 10 to 13 times higher

Significant underestimation of workplace deaths

The Casket project will be comprised of four videos that will share a similar look, feel and tone: one or two PSAs, a short video and a full-length documentary. These videos will be produced and distributed in phases over the next few years.

Phase 1: The first PSA (30-sec) will show the sheer volume of 20,000 deaths through the imagery of a growing tower of caskets (animated). This PSA will be aired on TV, shown on the JPMF website, You Tube channel and partner websites, as well as shared on social media.

Phase 2: The second PSA (30-sec) will show both the mounting death toll of deceased workers and the exponential number of loved ones left behind to pick up the pieces. This PSA will be animated but may include a real-life photo/s component. This PSA will be aired on TV, shown on the JPMF website, You Tube channel and partner websites, as well as shared on social media.

Phase 3: Through *photos, this short video (90-sec to 2-min) will highlight some of the actual people behind the numbers (deceased workers and their loved ones) – to reflect the human loss associated with workplace fatalities. This video will be shown on the JPMF website, You Tube channel and partner websites as well as shared on social media.

Phase 4: Through multiple interviews reflecting a broad spectrum of workplace safety perspectives, the full-length documentary (approx. 90 min) will explore how we got to where we are, in terms of the unacceptable number of workplace fatalities, and what is being done – and not done – to help bring about a stronger culture of workplace safety for all Canadians.

Goal: Ultimately, we aim to continue partnering with like-minded individuals and organizations to help bring these numbers DOWN. As far as we’re concerned, one workplace fatality is one too many.

*Call to family members who have been impacted by workplace fatality: if you have lost a family member to a workplace fatality (due to injury or occupational illness) and are interested in participating in this project, we would like to hear from you.

We are looking for people who would be interested in sending us a photograph of your loved one, as well as a photo of you holding that same photo. For further information (photo parameters, etc), please contact our Casket Video Project Family Liaison, Rebecca Orr at

Please note we will need the photos by August 1st, 2020.

For further information about the Casket video project, please contact Maryanne Pope (JPMF Director at Large & John’s widow) at or (778) 678-4496. Detailed treatments of all videos are available upon request.


Background: The John Petropoulos Memorial Fund (JPMF) is a registered Canadian charity. The JPMF was started shortly after John’s death (by John’s police recruit classmates) for the purpose of raising public awareness about why and how people can make their workplaces – including the roads – safer for everyone, including first responders.

The JPMF has produced a 10-min safety video, as well as eight 30-second PSAs that have aired on TV over 2 million times. For further info or to view the videos please visit

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

– Martin Luther King

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Slow Down Holiday Safety Video

‘Tis the busy holiday season…

But please take a moment and view this new 1-min traffic safety video, entitled “Please Slow Down & Give the Gift of Life This Holiday Season.”

And if you are on social media, please share. You just never know who might need to see this important reminder.

Life gets busy and it’s easy to get distracted…but everyone has the right to get home safely.

Thank you, take care & stay safe this holiday season.

Happy Holidays from all of us at the JPMF!

About the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund

The JPMF was started shortly after the death of Calgary Police Constable John Petropoulos on Sept 29th, 2000. John was investigating a break and enter complaint when he stepped through a false ceiling, fell nine feet into the lunchroom below and died of a brain injury. There was no safety railing to warn him of the danger; the complaint turned out to be a false alarm.

John was 32.

The JPMF is a registered Canadian charity that raises public awareness about workplace safety issues and educates people about why & how to ensure their workplaces and the roads are safer for everyone, including emergency responders. For further information, please visit