In December 2016 Canada made the announcement many people have been waiting years to hear – that they are finally banning asbestos.
The first asbestos mine in Canada was opened in 1879 in Quebec. Many more were subsequently opened across the country, taking advantage of the large mineral deposits and asbestos was used in Canada, as well as being exported around the world. As the industry started to boom, the ill health effects of asbestos began to show with workers suffering with breathing problems. It was as early as the 1920s that the mortality rates of Canadian asbestos miners were studied. Other studies were also carried out but there is evidence that the results of negative studies were kept from the public so as not to mar their opinion of the ‘wonder product’, asbestos.
Despite the health problems associated with asbestos, Canada continued to mine asbestos, leading the world’s asbestos production until the closure of their two largest mines in 2012. However the country continued to import products containing asbestos.
Campaigners have spent years trying to get Canada to ban asbestos, amazed that it is not already one of the 55 countries with a ban and so it was extremely welcome news when their Science Minister, Kirsty Duncan, announced the substance will be banned by next year
With asbestos not illegal in Canada, you may think that people who suffer with asbestos conditions may not be able to claim compensation. However, Mesothelioma is a compensatable condition in Canada, but it is thought that less than half of those affected by the disease apply for compensation.
Canada’s proposed asbestos ban is fantastic news but with every country that bans asbestos, there are still more putting their people at risk.
Amazingly, asbestos is not banned in the US. It is now a highly regulated substance but it is still used in gaskets, fireproofing materials and many other products, provided the asbestos makes up less than 1% of the product.
The only way to ensure a future free of devastating asbestos conditions, including mesothelioma, is to ban asbestos completely and to educate people on the dangers of asbestos.
If you require assistance in pursuing an asbestos compensation claim for mesothelioma or other asbestos disease then please contact us today on our freephone number 0800 038 6767. Alternatively, head over to the ‘Contact Us’ page, complete the form and we will be in touch.