Workers Safety Advocates Target Asbestos
Following the creation of the National Asbestos Inventory by Public Services and Procurement Canada, the spotlight has firmly turned on to this known carcinogen. This public registry lists all federal buildings and indicates if they contain asbestos. It is now mandatory to report asbestos use in public buildings. The idea is that workers have a right to know if they are putting themselves at asbestos exposure risk by working in a specific location.
Call for Ban
In 2011 alone, Canadians spent nearly $2 billion treating lung cancer and mesothelioma, caused by asbestos exposure at workplaces. Research has shown that it is not just workers who are at risk but also family members who may be exposed to the material from fibres the workers carry back if workplace conditions have asbestos contamination.
Keeping in view that asbestos can be very detrimental to worker safety, the Canadian labour Congress is pushing very strongly for a complete ban on the use of this material. The Automotive Industries Association is another entity strongly supporting a full ban on asbestos to promote safe working conditions for all. A number of developed countries have already banned the material, providing solid grounds for the Ban Asbestos Canada group to push the nation to do the same. In fact, in many countries, not just use of asbestos but also import- export and sale is deemed illegal.
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