World renowned experts, asbestos victims, labour, political leaders, academic researchers and health care providers will gather on Parliament Hill on May 12 to demand that Canada change its shameful course on asbestos, at a 11 a.m. press conference and subsequent rally. They will also call for just transition policies for communities relying on this industry.
"Pretending that there are methods to handle asbestos safely is just like saying there is a safe way to fall from a 15th floor," said Dr. Fernand Turcotte, professor emeritus of preventive medicine and public health at the medical school of Université Laval.
"Suffering from hunger is far less painful than suffering from a dreadful occupational illness like mesothelioma, a cancer caused by asbestos exposure," said Dr. Tushar Kant Joshi, occupational and environmental health physician, Fellow at Collegium Ramazzini in Italy.
After a press conference at 11 a.m. in the Charles Lynch Room, participants will be joined by demonstrators in front of Centre Block at 12:15.
- Press conference and demonstration to demand Canada change its shameful course on asbestos
- Pat Martin, NDP MP for Winnipeg Centre
- Dr. Kapil Khatter, family physician in Ottawa, President of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment
- Dr. Tushar Kant Joshi, world renowned occupational health expert
- Mike Bradley, Mayor of Sarnia
- Dr. Fernand Turcotte, professor emeritus of preventive medicine and public health at the medical school of Université Laval
- Dr. Barry Castleman, chemical engineer, environmentalist and asbestos substitutes consultant to the World Health Organization and the World Bank
- Hassan Yussuff, Secretary-Treasurer of the Canadian Labour Congress
- Sandra Kinart, Community Health Care worker and community activist whose husband Blayne has been diagnosed with Mesothelioma
- Press conference at 11 a.m., Charles Lynch Room (130 S, Centre Block, House of Commons, Ottawa)
- Demonstration at 12:15 p.m. in front of Centre Block
The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) is Canada’s largest union.
With around 600 000 members across Canada, CUPE represents workers in health care, education, municipalities, libraries, universities, social services, public utilities, transportation, emergency services and airlines.
A strong and democratic union, CUPE is committed to improving the quality of life for workers in Canada. Women and men working together to form local unions built CUPE. They did so to have a stronger voice – a collective voice – in their workplace and in society as a whole.
Together they have won the right to negotiate their wages and working conditions; to stop arbitrary action by employers; and to speak out without fear of reprisal.
CUPE members are service-providers, white-collar workers, technicians, labourers, skilled trades people and professionals. More than half of CUPE members are women. About one-third are part-time workers.
CUPE is a modern, dynamic and sophisticated union with more than 70 offices across the country.
Workers, united through CUPE, have the clout and expertise to deal with the growing complexities of our global economy.
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