Northwest labor press. (Portland , Ore.) 1987-current, April 20, 2018, Page 15, Image 15

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    NORTHWEST LABOR PRESS | April 20, 2018 | PAGE 15
Time to ban asbestos? Merkley and Bonamici think so
Oregon U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley
and U.S. Rep Suzanne Bonamici
are sponsoring bills to ban the
use of asbestos. Yes, asbestos.
“It’s outrageous that in the year
2018, asbestos is still allowed in
the United States,” said Merkley,
a Democrat. “It’s time for us to
catch up to the rest of the devel-
oped world, and ban this danger-
ous public health threat once and
for all.”
Asbestos — a known carcino-
gen — is a fiber that is still found
in insulation and fireproofing
materials in homes, commercial
buildings, and common products
such as paint and construction
materials. Each year, as many as
15,000 people die from asbestos-
related diseases, and 3,000 peo-
ple are diagnosed with mesothe-
lioma, a deadly form of cancer
typically caused by exposure to
asbestos. Asbestos-related dis-
eases typically take decades to
develop. Mesothelioma, for ex-
ample, has a latency period of 20
to 50 years.
The U.S. is the only western ban it.
That assessment still has not
industrialized nation that has not
been completed.
banned asbestos.
Last November, Merkley
Following a push in 2015 from
unions and federal labor advo- joined with seven Democratic
cates, the Canadian government senators to introduce the Alan Re-
instein Ban As-
passed a bill in
bestos Now
2016 to ban as-
Act. The bill is
bestos by the
“It’s outrageous that in
named after
end of this year.
the year 2018, asbestos
Alan Reinstein,
Asbestos is the
is still allowed in the
who passed
leading cause
United States.”
away in 2006
of workplace-
at the age of 66
related death in
— U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley
from mesothe-
Canada.
lioma, a dis-
In 2016, the
ease caused by
U.S. Congress
passed the Toxic Substances exposure to asbestos. Alan’s wife,
Control Act, which required the Linda, co-founded the Asbestos
Environmental Protection Age- Disease Awareness Organization
ncy (EPA) to undertake a safety (ADAO) in 2004.
In February, Bonamici, a De-
assessment of asbestos. The
agency included asbestos on its mocrat, introduced a companion
list of the first 10 chemicals for bill in the U.S. House. Also
risk reviews under the Act, but named the Alan Reinstein Ban
its safety assessment must be Asbestos Now Act, the bill re-
completed before EPA can con- quires the EPA to complete its
sider any controls on asbestos, assessment, and within 18
and the EPA is not required to months would prohibit the man-
ufacture, processing, use, distri-
bution in commerce, and dis-
posal of asbestos.
“Congress and the EPA must
immediately work together to
protect the health of our com-
munities from this known car-
cinogen,” Bonamici said in a
press statement.
Linda Reinstein of ADAO
says asbestos imports are on the
rise. “The chemical industry
continues shamefully to seek a
way to profit from a known car-
cinogen, putting the lives of
miners from other countries at
risk, as well as those exposed
during and after production.”
On April 13, both Merkley
and Bonamici were presented
“The Tribute of Hope Award”
by the ADAO for their “stead-
fast commitment to awareness,
prevention, and policy to elimi-
nate asbestos-related diseases.”
Both lawmakers said they
continue to look for Republican
co-sponsors to partner up on the
bill to get it passed.
■
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Cement corrugated sheet
Cement flat sheet
Clothing
Pipeline wrap
Roofing felt
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Vinyl floor tile
Cement shingle
Millboard
Cement pipe
Automatic transmission
components
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Clutch facings
Friction materials
Disk brake pads
Drum brake linings
Brake blocks
The Oregon & SW Washington
Glaziers, Architectural Metal
& Glass Workers Joint
Apprenticeship &
Journeyman Training
Program will be open to
accept applications to create a
pool of eligible applicants.
Applicants must be at least 18
years old. Must apply in
person and furnish a copy of a
high school diploma and grade
transcript or GED and test
scores at time of application.
Applications will be taken
May 14 through May 25, 2018
Monday through Friday,
9 to 11 a.m. and 1 to 3 p.m.
Glaziers Training Center
Examples of asbestos-containing products that are currently legal
Incredibly, it’s currently legal in the
United States to manufacture, import,
process and distribute the following
products containing asbestos (as well as
some others not listed.)
Glazier
Apprenticeship
Accepting
Applications
Mt. Hood Community College
Room GE 108
■ Gaskets
■ Non-roofing coatings
■ Roof coatings
26000 SE Stark St.,
Gresham, Oregon
Women and minorities are
encouraged to apply.
Veterans’ GI Benefits may apply