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The Politics of   Asbestos:Canada’s Shame February 13, 2012       Cathy Walker Former H&S Director, CAW        SPPH 534
Asbestos: Killer Dust
We’ve known about thehazards of asbestos sincethe First Century Pliny the Elder  reported on  Roman slaves  having sicken...
Charlemagne usedasbestos napkins, 800 AD  He threw soiled   napkins into the   fire and they   came out clean
Insurance companies stopped  issuing life insurance to  asbestos workers Cape Asbestos plant in London, England, 1910
Asbestos insulationsprayers, 1960s and 70s
Union went to Dr. IrvingSelikoff: New York and NewJersey asbestos sprayers
Selikoff Examined 1,117asbestos insulation workers  More than 50% already had asbestosis   determined by X-Rays  For tho...
Asbestos stopped being usedas sprayed oninsulation, halfway throughbuilding the World TradeCentre buildings
But of course there was stilllots of asbestos in theSeptember 11, 2001 dust
Do you have to be covered indust to die from asbestos?  The answer is ―no‖  Professors CAUT   employed at the   Universi...
Where is asbestos in your      community? If you don‘t  know, find out Where is asbestos  likely to be found? In this w...
Around beams
Ceilings (used for noise aswell as fire insulation)
In insulation
Deteriorated insulation
Around Boilers
Around Pipes
Asbestos Cement
In Ceiling Tiles Canadian school, 2002
In floor tiles
When asbestos deteriorates itbecomes “friable” (crumbly)
What is asbestos?  It is a ―natural‖   fibre found in the   ground  It is mined and   processed and   used to be used in...
Two main Asbestosgroups  Amphiboles (straight   fibres)  Serpentine (curly   fibres)
There’s not really a lot of difference Amphiboles   Crocidolite   Amosite Serpentine   Chrysotile:   95% of world as...
Excellent Insulation  It is a nearly   perfect product for   insulation  It is fireproof and   virtually   indestructibl...
Indestructible everywhere  These   indestructible   asbestos fibres   stay in your lungs   forever
So how do we protect        people? Work closely with health and safety  committee members Skilled trades workers are of...
We have banned the use ofasbestos in major collectiveagreements  We now have   to bargain its   safe, effective   removal
Work refusals lead to  action on asbestos At airports throughout Canada CAW members exercised their right to refuse  uns...
Is there a map and isasbestos identified clearly?  Each place where asbestos is found must have   a clear label  There s...
Insist on asbestos removalby knowledgeable firms andworkers
Proper Asbestos Removal  Complete enclosure   of the asbestos   removal area by   sealed plastic  Only trained   asbesto...
B.C. Contractor sentenced to60 days in jail, Jan 24, 2012  Exposed unprotected workers, many   of them teenagers  (2009,...
Labour’s Response:    ―An important message is being sent today that if you willfully expose your employees     to known ...
What about encapsulation(covering the asbestos)?  Eventually, all asbestos will become   friable  Every time it is distu...
Asbestos continues to killFrancis Huggett: $102,450 pluspension; rep Karen Willsey
Closed in1988,legacy ofdeathlives on.
Holmes Foundry Claims                              Total Lump Sum  $20,000,000  $18,000,000  $16,000,000  $14,000,000  $12...
But what about Canada’sexport of asbestos?  The Chrysotile   Asbestos Institute   promotes chrysotile   asbestos as ―safe...
CBC News Special ReportFebruary 2, 2012  http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/story/2012   /02/01/asbestos-study-mcgill.html   ...
Conservatives backasbestos export, CBC report     Two Conservative members of parliament stood up in the House of      Co...
Everybody needs cleanwater, right?  But these pipes deteriorate and   break, releasing asbestos  And usually we export o...
And asbestos is used in roofsof houses and huts where itcrumbles directly onto thepeople who live there
Where is this asbestos roof?
Asbestos bags leak
Brazilian worker breakingopen asbestos bags
Asbestos use in Peru: halfis from Canada
Canadian asbestos in Peru
Working with Asbestos in Peru
Funeral:Asbestos Deaths in Peru
These next pictures arefrom Pakistan  From a presentation   by Laurie Kazan-   Allen from the UK   with photos from   Noo...
Assistant Professor Noor Jehan standing with a worker beside an asbestos dump at theAsbestos, Talc and Clay Crushing unit ...
Asbestos sheet cutting unit in Mardan City (NWFP) located on the main road in aresidential area.
Inside this building is a flour mill; while outside is an asbestoscrushing machine and an asbestos dump. The man in thepic...
Asbestos Use in India  How little protection   there is in developing   countries for either   workers or for the   gener...
Ahmedabad, Gujarat India  Manager of an asbestos factory: ―Our   factory is so safe that our workers do not   need to wea...
There is a water spray on the blade of the circularsaw but the worker‘s hair is white with asbestos.
Protesting againstasbestos factory in Bihar:students told their farmerparents of hazards
Canadian News: Finally!  http://watch.ctv.ca/news/top-   picks/asbestos-basics/#clip190469  Dr. Jim Brophy, long-time he...
CBC News: Melissa Fungin India  The National: Canada‘s Ugly Secret, by   Melissa Fung, June 10, 2009, runs 15.14  http:/...
China produces its own asbestos      Conclusions from important new report.      http://www.pcfb.org.hk/research/pdf/Rep...
Why does Canada supportthe production of asbestos?  Isn‘t is unconscionable?  How can our federal government oppose   as...
Who are these people?
Baljit and Roshi Chadha
Roshi Chadha  Mrs. Roshi Chadha is a member of the   Board of Governors of the Canadian Red   Cross Association  A membe...
Baljit Chadha  Mr. Baljit Chadha is seeking to revive the   dying but not yet dead, Quebec asbestos   industry  is lobby...
Québec, mining asbestossince 1879
No protection in the earlydays, King mine 1896
Women also had noprotection, 1930 Johnsonmine
Yet in 1911, insurancecompanies stopped insuringasbestos workers  Because they   were dying of   asbestosis and   cancer ...
In Asbestos and in ThetfordMines the towns wereadjacent to the mines andtailings. St.-Mauriceparish, 1950
1949, Premier MauriceDuplessis ruled Québec
Le drapeaufleurdelisé, adopté parMaurice Duplessis le 21janvier 1948
Duplessis, nationalist orimposter?  Fascist or   statesman?
In 1949, miners in Quebecwere prepared to fight back
Miners in Asbestos andThetford Mines fought back  Against the U.S. corporation, Johns   Manville  Against the Roman Cath...
Asbestos StrikeQuébec, 1949
Asbestos Strike, 1949Who was there?  Jean Marchand, union leader  Gérard Pelletier, journalist with Le Devoir
1949 - 1951, conseiller auConseil privé
What did the workersthink?  Globe and Mail, headline, Oct. 2, 2000:    ―Pierre Elliott Trudeau, 1919-2000, Still a     h...
Duplessis sent ArchbishopCharbonneau to BC becausehe supported the strikers
1949’s legacy remains.Debating anti-scablegislation inParliament, October21, 2003:  Mr. André Bachand (Richmond—   Arthab...
Québec sovereigntymovementQuiet Revolution reallybegan in 1949 with theAsbestos Strike
Québec miners 1975 As you can hear in this CBC Radio clip, patients  suffering from asbestos-related illnesses  experienc...
Québec mines cleaned upconsiderably after the PQnationalized the mines  Excellent   ventilation  Protective   measures ...
Tailings are still thereThetford Mines, 2002
Just Transition Needed  Relocation assistance for miners   and residents  Retraining for workers  Income continuity  P...
These countries all havesome form of asbestos ban:  Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil (4   states), Chile, C...
Call for asbestos export ban   The Canadian Medical Association, the    Canadian Cancer Society, the Canadian    Public H...
How can we export deathto the third world?  Chrysotile   asbestos – it looks   so innocent, but   it‘s so deadly
Canada Day, July 1, 2009English unionists rideagainst Canadian asbestos
It is appalling that this litanyof death be allowed tocontinue  I call on all of you with as much sincerity   as I can mu...
I salute each and every oneof you who has ever carrieda sign like this:
It remains for Canada to end its contribution toan epidemic that it initiated and has promotedfor over a hundred years Can...
It remains for Canada to end its contribution toan epidemic that it initiated and has promotedfor over a hundred years (co...
Asbestos.canada's shame.feb13.2012.ppt2010
Asbestos.canada's shame.feb13.2012.ppt2010
Asbestos.canada's shame.feb13.2012.ppt2010
Asbestos.canada's shame.feb13.2012.ppt2010
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Transcript of "Asbestos.canada's shame.feb13.2012.ppt2010"

  1. 1. The Politics of Asbestos:Canada’s Shame February 13, 2012 Cathy Walker Former H&S Director, CAW SPPH 534
  2. 2. Asbestos: Killer Dust
  3. 3. We’ve known about thehazards of asbestos sincethe First Century Pliny the Elder reported on Roman slaves having sickened lungs from weaving asbestos into cloth
  4. 4. Charlemagne usedasbestos napkins, 800 AD  He threw soiled napkins into the fire and they came out clean
  5. 5. Insurance companies stopped issuing life insurance to asbestos workers Cape Asbestos plant in London, England, 1910
  6. 6. Asbestos insulationsprayers, 1960s and 70s
  7. 7. Union went to Dr. IrvingSelikoff: New York and NewJersey asbestos sprayers
  8. 8. Selikoff Examined 1,117asbestos insulation workers  More than 50% already had asbestosis determined by X-Rays  For those exposed more than 20 years, 339 of 392 (87%) had asbestosis  Lung cancers were 7 times the expected rate  Gastrointestinal cancers were 3 times the expected rate
  9. 9. Asbestos stopped being usedas sprayed oninsulation, halfway throughbuilding the World TradeCentre buildings
  10. 10. But of course there was stilllots of asbestos in theSeptember 11, 2001 dust
  11. 11. Do you have to be covered indust to die from asbestos?  The answer is ―no‖  Professors CAUT employed at the University of Manitoba have died from asbestos exposure
  12. 12. Where is asbestos in your community? If you don‘t know, find out Where is asbestos likely to be found? In this workplace it‘s in the cladding around the building. But it can be almost anywhere
  13. 13. Around beams
  14. 14. Ceilings (used for noise aswell as fire insulation)
  15. 15. In insulation
  16. 16. Deteriorated insulation
  17. 17. Around Boilers
  18. 18. Around Pipes
  19. 19. Asbestos Cement
  20. 20. In Ceiling Tiles Canadian school, 2002
  21. 21. In floor tiles
  22. 22. When asbestos deteriorates itbecomes “friable” (crumbly)
  23. 23. What is asbestos?  It is a ―natural‖ fibre found in the ground  It is mined and processed and used to be used in a wide variety of products
  24. 24. Two main Asbestosgroups  Amphiboles (straight fibres)  Serpentine (curly fibres)
  25. 25. There’s not really a lot of difference Amphiboles  Crocidolite  Amosite Serpentine  Chrysotile:  95% of world asbestos  Includes Canadian asbestos:
  26. 26. Excellent Insulation  It is a nearly perfect product for insulation  It is fireproof and virtually indestructible  Great for brake pads and many other products
  27. 27. Indestructible everywhere  These indestructible asbestos fibres stay in your lungs forever
  28. 28. So how do we protect people? Work closely with health and safety committee members Skilled trades workers are often most at risk They have to work in asbestos-containing areas So they need to know where the asbestos is
  29. 29. We have banned the use ofasbestos in major collectiveagreements  We now have to bargain its safe, effective removal
  30. 30. Work refusals lead to action on asbestos At airports throughout Canada CAW members exercised their right to refuse unsafe work under the Canada Labour Code Through the courage of these women union members, they protected themselves, their fellow workers and the public
  31. 31. Is there a map and isasbestos identified clearly?  Each place where asbestos is found must have a clear label  There should be a map of where asbestos is found in each workplace  But we can‘t always trust this information  If people are working on the ceiling of your work area and dust is falling and you are unsure, insist it be analyzed for asbestos
  32. 32. Insist on asbestos removalby knowledgeable firms andworkers
  33. 33. Proper Asbestos Removal  Complete enclosure of the asbestos removal area by sealed plastic  Only trained asbestos removal workers to be in the asbestos removal area  Negative pressure in removal area so no asbestos fibres escape
  34. 34. B.C. Contractor sentenced to60 days in jail, Jan 24, 2012  Exposed unprotected workers, many of them teenagers  (2009, 44% of all work-related deaths in B.C. due to asbestos)
  35. 35. Labour’s Response:  ―An important message is being sent today that if you willfully expose your employees to known carcinogens, you will end up in jail,‖ said BC Federation of Labour President, Jim Sinclair.  ―It is a pretty rare opportunity to see an employer actually go to jail for what he is doing,‖…―These workers face a potential death sentence from cancer, and Arthur Moore will walk free in two months. That‘s totally wrong.‖ Lee Loftus, BC & Yukon Building Trades Council Pres.
  36. 36. What about encapsulation(covering the asbestos)?  Eventually, all asbestos will become friable  Every time it is disturbed, it gets into the air  Remove it competently and the problem is solved  If the building is going to be torn down in the near future, crumbly asbestos can be encapsulated
  37. 37. Asbestos continues to killFrancis Huggett: $102,450 pluspension; rep Karen Willsey
  38. 38. Closed in1988,legacy ofdeathlives on.
  39. 39. Holmes Foundry Claims Total Lump Sum $20,000,000 $18,000,000 $16,000,000 $14,000,000 $12,000,000 $10,000,000 $8,000,000 $6,000,000 $4,000,000 $2,000,000 $0 2000-01-01 2001-01-01 2002-01-01 2003-01-01 2004-01-01
  40. 40. But what about Canada’sexport of asbestos?  The Chrysotile Asbestos Institute promotes chrysotile asbestos as ―safe‖  Where is our asbestos used in developing countries?
  41. 41. CBC News Special ReportFebruary 2, 2012  http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/story/2012 /02/01/asbestos-study-mcgill.html  ―It is still commonly used in developing countries like India and Vietnam.  The World Health Organization estimates that more than 107,000 people die annually from asbestos exposure worldwide  Ken Takahashi, an epidemiologist affiliated with WHO, recently said that ―asbestos tsunami‖ of deaths is going to hit Asia because of the continued use of the product there.‖  Asbestos worker, India:
  42. 42. Conservatives backasbestos export, CBC report  Two Conservative members of parliament stood up in the House of Commons in the past year to say that chrysotile can be safely handled based on studies, some of which come out of McGill:  ―Mr. Speaker, scientific reviews show that chrysotile fibres can be used safely in a controlled environment at the national or international level." — Christian Paradis, federal Minister of Industry and Quebec MP, House of Commons, Nov. 23, 2011.  ―All scientific reviews clearly confirm that chrysotile fibres can be used safely in controlled conditions.‖ — Joe Oliver, Ontario MP, House of Commons, June 20, 2011.  During the federal election campaign last April, Prime Minister Stephen Harper went to the asbestos region in Quebec and talked about the industry.  ―Canada is one of a number of exporters of chrysotile and there are a number of countries in which it is legal who are buyers. This government will not put Canadian industry in a position where it is discriminated against in a market where it is permitted.‖
  43. 43. Everybody needs cleanwater, right?  But these pipes deteriorate and break, releasing asbestos  And usually we export only raw asbestos so someone had to mix the asbestos and the cement, usually by hand
  44. 44. And asbestos is used in roofsof houses and huts where itcrumbles directly onto thepeople who live there
  45. 45. Where is this asbestos roof?
  46. 46. Asbestos bags leak
  47. 47. Brazilian worker breakingopen asbestos bags
  48. 48. Asbestos use in Peru: halfis from Canada
  49. 49. Canadian asbestos in Peru
  50. 50. Working with Asbestos in Peru
  51. 51. Funeral:Asbestos Deaths in Peru
  52. 52. These next pictures arefrom Pakistan  From a presentation by Laurie Kazan- Allen from the UK with photos from Noor Jehan of Pakistan
  53. 53. Assistant Professor Noor Jehan standing with a worker beside an asbestos dump at theAsbestos, Talc and Clay Crushing unit in Mohmand Agency, Pakistan.
  54. 54. Asbestos sheet cutting unit in Mardan City (NWFP) located on the main road in aresidential area.
  55. 55. Inside this building is a flour mill; while outside is an asbestoscrushing machine and an asbestos dump. The man in thepicture has worked for 8 years on this machine and was notconvinced of any hazard related to asbestos inhalation or itsmixing with flour produced inside the building.
  56. 56. Asbestos Use in India  How little protection there is in developing countries for either workers or for the general population.
  57. 57. Ahmedabad, Gujarat India  Manager of an asbestos factory: ―Our factory is so safe that our workers do not need to wear masks.‖  The factory has received an ISO 9002 rating from a British company.  Broken asbestos pieces are used to fill up areas as driveways where vehicles enter the distribution area.
  58. 58. There is a water spray on the blade of the circularsaw but the worker‘s hair is white with asbestos.
  59. 59. Protesting againstasbestos factory in Bihar:students told their farmerparents of hazards
  60. 60. Canadian News: Finally!  http://watch.ctv.ca/news/top- picks/asbestos-basics/#clip190469  Dr. Jim Brophy, long-time health & safety activist
  61. 61. CBC News: Melissa Fungin India  The National: Canada‘s Ugly Secret, by Melissa Fung, June 10, 2009, runs 15.14  http://www.cbc.ca/national/blog/video/hea ltheducation/canadas_ugly_secret.html
  62. 62. China produces its own asbestos  Conclusions from important new report.  http://www.pcfb.org.hk/research/pdf/Reportprofwangabs.pdf  The data from the 37-yr prospective cohort of asbestos workers and 26-yr historical cohort of asbestos miners provided consistent results, showing substantially excessive cause-specific mortality, in particular for lung cancer and respiratory diseases, in asbestos exposed workers/miners.  The study provides additionally strong and valuable evidence for the association between mortality of lung cancer (and all cancers and non- malignant respiratory diseases) and exposure to chrysotile asbestos.
  63. 63. Why does Canada supportthe production of asbestos?  Isn‘t is unconscionable?  How can our federal government oppose asbestos bans in other countries, including bringing a complaint against the French asbestos ban to the WTO?  To understand the position of the federal government, you have to understand the history of the union movement in Québec
  64. 64. Who are these people?
  65. 65. Baljit and Roshi Chadha
  66. 66. Roshi Chadha  Mrs. Roshi Chadha is a member of the Board of Governors of the Canadian Red Cross Association  A member of the Board of Directors of McGill University Health Centre  Since 1981, an executive of Seja Trade Ltd., a Montreal company that has for years been exporting asbestos from the open-pit Jeffrey asbestos mine in Quebec to India
  67. 67. Baljit Chadha  Mr. Baljit Chadha is seeking to revive the dying but not yet dead, Quebec asbestos industry  is lobbying the Quebec government for a $58 million loan guarantee in order to open a new underground Jeffrey mine  which would export of millions of tonnes of asbestos to Asia for the next 25 to 50 years
  68. 68. Québec, mining asbestossince 1879
  69. 69. No protection in the earlydays, King mine 1896
  70. 70. Women also had noprotection, 1930 Johnsonmine
  71. 71. Yet in 1911, insurancecompanies stopped insuringasbestos workers  Because they were dying of asbestosis and cancer  This is a recent asbestos miner showing his X-Ray
  72. 72. In Asbestos and in ThetfordMines the towns wereadjacent to the mines andtailings. St.-Mauriceparish, 1950
  73. 73. 1949, Premier MauriceDuplessis ruled Québec
  74. 74. Le drapeaufleurdelisé, adopté parMaurice Duplessis le 21janvier 1948
  75. 75. Duplessis, nationalist orimposter?  Fascist or statesman?
  76. 76. In 1949, miners in Quebecwere prepared to fight back
  77. 77. Miners in Asbestos andThetford Mines fought back  Against the U.S. corporation, Johns Manville  Against the Roman Catholic Church  And especially, against Maurice Duplessis  They fought for four months  The issues were wages, but especially, working conditions, protection from the killer dust, asbestos
  78. 78. Asbestos StrikeQuébec, 1949
  79. 79. Asbestos Strike, 1949Who was there?  Jean Marchand, union leader  Gérard Pelletier, journalist with Le Devoir
  80. 80. 1949 - 1951, conseiller auConseil privé
  81. 81. What did the workersthink?  Globe and Mail, headline, Oct. 2, 2000:  ―Pierre Elliott Trudeau, 1919-2000, Still a hero in Québec after all these years‖  Rosaire Drouin, miner, speaking of Trudeau,  ―He was sort of the ambassador for the union. He explained to us our rights against Duplessis." ―  ―He defended the workers. He was good for Québec and Canada. Its a long time since weve seen a good one like that."
  82. 82. Duplessis sent ArchbishopCharbonneau to BC becausehe supported the strikers
  83. 83. 1949’s legacy remains.Debating anti-scablegislation inParliament, October21, 2003:  Mr. André Bachand (Richmond— Arthabaska, PC)  ―I am from Asbestos.‖…  ―The scabs were the main problem during the strike of 1949 in Asbestos. I am not going to call them ―strikebreakers‖ or ―replacement workers‖; they were scabs. There were fights, and the provincial police were there.‖
  84. 84. Québec sovereigntymovementQuiet Revolution reallybegan in 1949 with theAsbestos Strike
  85. 85. Québec miners 1975 As you can hear in this CBC Radio clip, patients suffering from asbestos-related illnesses experience shortness of breath, extreme fatigue and persistent coughing often excreting blood: CBC Radio clip: 1975, Thetford Mines, Paul Brodeur, etc. http://archives.cbc.ca/IDC-1-75- 608-3400/science_technology/asbestos/clip2 Miners still striking in the ‗70s over working conditions
  86. 86. Québec mines cleaned upconsiderably after the PQnationalized the mines  Excellent ventilation  Protective measures  Still a risk at work, but not an enormous one as before
  87. 87. Tailings are still thereThetford Mines, 2002
  88. 88. Just Transition Needed  Relocation assistance for miners and residents  Retraining for workers  Income continuity  Pensions
  89. 89. These countries all havesome form of asbestos ban:  Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil (4 states), Chile, Croatia, Denmark, El Salvador, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Latvia, Lit huania, Luxembourg, Monaco, Netherlands, N ew Zealand, Norway, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerlan d, United Kingdom, Uruguay
  90. 90. Call for asbestos export ban  The Canadian Medical Association, the Canadian Cancer Society, the Canadian Public Health Association, the Quebec government‘s own sixteen Directors of Public Health, as well as numerous other medical authorities, have strongly and unanimously called for the export of asbestos to end and have opposed the re-opening of the Jeffrey mine, saying that asbestos from the mine would lead to loss of life.
  91. 91. How can we export deathto the third world?  Chrysotile asbestos – it looks so innocent, but it‘s so deadly
  92. 92. Canada Day, July 1, 2009English unionists rideagainst Canadian asbestos
  93. 93. It is appalling that this litanyof death be allowed tocontinue  I call on all of you with as much sincerity as I can muster  Keep the pressure on the Canadian government!  Don‘t let us continue to mine and export asbestos, killer dust!  Ban Asbestos!
  94. 94. I salute each and every oneof you who has ever carrieda sign like this:
  95. 95. It remains for Canada to end its contribution toan epidemic that it initiated and has promotedfor over a hundred years Canadian Journal of Public Health, 2011, Vol. 102, 1.Re: Paradis G. Ban All Production and Export of Chrysotile Asbestos [Editor’s Page]. Can J PublicHealth 2010;101(5):352.Dear Editor: Your organization [Canadian Public Health Association, publisher of CJPH], the Canadian Cancer Society and the Canadian Medical Association are to be commended for having aligned themselves with the United Nations agencies and the European Union in their call for the elimination of the use and exportation of asbestos, and for the proper management of asbestos that has been used, including remediation. It remains for Canada to end its contribution to an epidemic that it initiated and has promoted for over a hundred years. Many millions of dollars have been spent on Canadian institutions that regularly reported to the effect: ―...à part ça, madame la Marquise, Tout va très bien, tout va très bien‖. Denial was the Canadian stance as early as 1912(1) and it continues to this day to be the stock in trade of its public relations lobbyists. Inquiries into the adverse effects of chrysotile by the Province of Quebec in 1976 and by the Ontario Royal Commission in 1984 were effective public relations exercises in that they did not provoke an outcry or impair exports.
  96. 96. It remains for Canada to end its contribution toan epidemic that it initiated and has promotedfor over a hundred years (cont’d)  Claims for there being honest intellectual doubt about the  need to operate a worldwide ban were being made by the CMA as  late as 2001 when its Journal debated: ‗Should Canadian health  care professionals call for a worldwide ban on asbestos?‘ Despite  the authoritative opinions of the UN and the EU, the CMA  expressed the need for a panel of experts with no ―significant experience  or interest in asbestos research‖ [sic] to review the public  health implications of asbestos and the efficacy and the hazards of  alternative materials.  A case could be made for Canada making amends by establishing  a Truth Commission serviced by a prestigious ‗panel of experts‘. Its  remit would be to review all the factors that allowed the continued  production of asbestos for over one hundred years, in the face of  accumulating evidence. Such a body could determine the lessons to  be learned from the asbestos epidemic and provide guidance on  how not to repeat history.   Morris Greenberg, MB, FRCP, FFOM. London, England   REFERENCE  1. Department of Labour. Labour Gazette. February 12, 1912.  Letter.
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