Health Canada Reverses Asbestos Position

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Posted on Mar 29, 2018

 

In January 2018, Health Canada and Environment and Climate Change Canada—the country's national health and environmental agencies—moved forward with a proposed ban on the use, sale, import, and export of asbestos, as well as products that contain the material. Asbestos has been recognized as a carcinogen by the World Health Organization (WHO) for more than 30 years and has been linked to the development of serious illnesses, including mesothelioma—a rare and deadly cancer that affects the tissue lining the lungs, heart, abdominal cavity, and testicles.

Health Canada's View on Asbestos

The proposed ban comes three years after Health Canada's “landmark shift” on the risks of asbestos exposure that confirmed the hazardous nature of all types of asbestos and that the inhalation of asbestos fibers can cause cancer and other diseases. Prior to the July 2015 statement, Health Canada maintained that some of the six types of asbestos minerals were less lethal than others and that the dangers associated with asbestos were only a concern if the fibers were inhaled in “significant quantities.”

The acknowledgment of the hazards related to asbestos exposure, as well as the proposed ban, bring the Canadian government more in line with the position of other developed nations, such as Japan, Germany, and Australia—all of which have permanently banned the use of the carcinogen.

However, while the United States has imposed strict regulations on the use of asbestos, its use has not been banned entirely, and Americans can still be exposed to dangerous asbestos particles—especially if they have worked closely with insulation, roofing tiles, or other building materials made between the 1940s and the 1970s.

Do You Need an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney?

If you or a loved one were diagnosed with mesothelioma that you believe was caused by exposure to asbestos, you may be entitled to compensation. The knowledgeable personal injury attorneys with Neblett, Beard & Arsenault can help you understand your rights and explore your legal options. Our attorneys work on a contingency basis, meaning that we only get paid once your case is settled and you will not be faced with discouraging upfront costs. Contact Neblett, Beard & Arsenault today to schedule an appointment for a free initial analysis of your case.