Canadian Lung Association Blog

Asbestos: You have the right to know!


Asbestos is a natural fibrous mineral that is heat resistant, chemical resistant and hard to break down.  It is found in items such as insulation and ceiling/floor tiles.  If these products are to be disturbed, you should call a trained professional to remove it properly.  Exposure to asbestos fibres can cause a type of pulmonary fibrosis called asbestosis.  Asbestos causes damage and scarring so your alveoli (air sacs) become stiff, not stretchy.

Howard Willems from Saskatoon recently died of cancer because of exposure to asbestos on the job.  He was just 59 years old.  Howard was an inspector with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.  Right up until his death, he advocated for a mandatory public registry of public buildings that contain asbestos.

Now Howard’s family, the Canadian Cancer Society, Lung Association and first responders including firefighters, emergency workers and police chiefs are working hard to get Howard’s Law passed.  You can help.

If you agree that you have to right to know if asbestos is present in your school, hospital or daycare, please sign this petition and share it with others.

Mike Holmes has partnered with the Canadian Lung Association to build awareness among do-it-yourselfers and homeowners about the impact of asbestos on their lung health.  Get the facts about asbestos before you start your next home renovation project.  You could save your lungs.

If you have questions, call the Lung Helpline – 1-888-566-5864.

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