Information in unreleased silicosis audit raises questions

NDP House Leader Lorraine Michael

As Labrador West families wait for a resolution to longstanding concerns about industrial disease, government is holding on to a vital report – a medical audit that workers say may contain inaccurate information. Today in the House of Assembly, NDP House Leader Lorraine Michael pressed government for an update on the audit that means so much to people facing silicosis and other lung conditions.

“The medical audit of IOC workers’ x-rays has found 35 suspected cases of silicosis and 86 lung abnormalities possibly related to silica dust,” Michael in Question Period today.

“Government has this medical audit but hasn’t released it. We are told that workers have concerns about serious inaccuracies in the results.

“I ask the Minister for Service NL, when will the medical audit be released?”

All the reports in the world will be of little use if steps aren’t taken to prevent similar issues in the future, Michael said.

“We have reliable information that silica dust levels are going up again on the mine site due to problems with dust collectors, a blocked fresh air duct and dust blowing into buildings,” she said.

“I ask the Minister, what is government going to do to ensure that the IOC workplace is free of silica dust exposure?”

Associated Caucus Members: 

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