Asbestos: Enough Already!

*** Great 1 1/2 minute Rick Mercer rant on asbestos here!!

I’ve had a # of e-mail messages recently about the Canadian government’s refusal to engage on this issue with any integrity. Our so-called “leader” (Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper) has once again embarrassed Canadians on the world stage.

The Green Party of Canada has been running a “We’re sorry” campaign. From a recent GPC message:

“On Friday, June 24, the Conservative government once again embarrassed our country on the international stage. Canada alone prevented the United Nations from adding chrysotile asbestos to the global list of hazardous substances.

Here in Canada, we won’t allow asbestos in our homes and offices. We are spending millions to remove it from our Parliament buildings. We know asbestos is hazardous.

Yet year after year our government refuses to let the world officially recognize it as hazardous, because they want to continue to export it to developing countries without even a warning label.

Our government has behaved shamefully on this issue.”

The Canadian Nurses Association recently passed a resolution to Ban the Mining, Production, Use and Export of Asbestos and Other Measures to Reduce Loss of Life From Asbestos-Related Disease.

The Prevent Cancer Now group has also been campaigning on this issue. They have plenty of resources on it hereincluding fact sheets, newspaper article links & suggestions for individual & group action.

From the Prevent Cancer Now Web site: "The following Canadian organizations have called for a ban on asbestos:

Prevent Cancer Now, Ban Asbestos Canada, Breast Cancer Action Montreal, Breast Cancer Research Education Fund, Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, Canadian Association of University Teachers, Canadian Auto Workers, Canadian Building Trades Council and all provincial building trades unions (including Quebec), Canadian Cancer Society, Canadian Environmental Law Association, Canadian Institute for Environmental Law and Policy, Canadian Labour Congress, Canadian Teachers’ Federation, Canadian Union of Public Employees, CARWAH (Canadian Association of Researchers in Work and Health), Clean Production Action, David Suzuki Foundation, Ecojustice, MiningWatch Canada, Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers, Ontario College of Family Physicians, Ontario Teachers’ Federation, Prevent Cancer Now, Rideau Institute for International Affairs, Saunders-Matthey Cancer Prevention Coalition, Sierra Club of Canada, Toxic-Free Canada, Women’s Healthy Environments Network."

‘Quote of the day’ w. this post: “…we mine asbestos, we ship it, we make money from it, and we’ll use every diplomatic trick in the book to defend this odious practice. We are the Ugly Canadians.” Globe & Mail columnist Jeffrey Simpson June 25/11.