Asbestos Disease Support Society disappointed with government response to asbestos recommendations

Asbestos Disease Support Society has slammed the Federal Government’s response to the Senate’s Report into the unlawful importation of goods containing asbestos.

Society General Manager, Trevor Torrens said the Government is failing to act to tackle the scourge of asbestos.

“The Government acknowledges the significant impact on the community from exposure to asbestos, yet has not acted on the majority of recommendations that would make a difference” Mr Torrens said.

The Senate Inquiry made a number of recommendations including:

  • Tougher penalties for importers;
  • Compulsory recalls of products found containing asbestos;
  • Creation of a specialist unit within Border Force focused on stopping illegal asbestos imports; and
  • Mandatory Government funded asbestos awareness training in the construction industry.

The importation of asbestos containing products has been banned since 2003.

ADSS Chair, Andrew Ramsay said asbestos is still impacting the community, with 43 members of the ADSS dying in 2018, as a result of exposure to asbestos.

“Unfortunately, we are still seeing people who worked with products containing asbestos like fibro, brake linings and lagging on pipes, suffer,” Mr Ramsay said.

“We don’t want to see another “wave” of asbestos sufferers because of irresponsible Government decisions.”

The Society is calling on the Australian Government to reconsider their responses.

The Asbestos Disease Support Society was established in 1992 and has more than 600 members. The Society supports sufferers of asbestos related disease, their families and caregivers and promotes awareness about the risks of exposure to asbestos.

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