Excerpt from the OH&S Canada magazine
the conclusion of a review of past cancer claims against former General Electric (GE) workers in Peterborough, Ontario so the acceptance of 71 claims that had been previously denied. The previous decision was upheld in a further 105 claims for others being abandoned.
According to a Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) statement on August 1, 2018 cancer diagnoses among Peterborough’s former GE workers were first noted in the 1990s. Toxic chemicals, many of which were known carcinogens, were used at the plant between 1945 and 2000.
Last September, the WSIB created a dedicated review team comprising occupational-disease adjudicators, occupational hygienists and physician experts to look at 233 claims that had previously been denied. The team reviewed each claim individually to apply any new evidence as well as updated scientific research that link chemical exposure to particular diseases.
“Peterborough families were looking for answers in closure,” says Armando Fatigati, WSIB’s vice-president of complex claims. “people brought forward new information and wanted to know that all of the evidence and latest scientific research was considered. We’re confident these claims reflect the most updated scientific research and all the available evidence.”
Reviewers also located the next of kin in eight claims that had previously been abandoned. Next of kin were not found in the remaining 45 previously abandoned claims.
This issue is near and dear to me as HRS Group Inc. is a health and safety training company IN Peterborough and we are affected by this daily. We could be walking past people in the malls that are related to some of those affected and sympathize with the families. Loss of income and added healthcare costs dearly affect the families. GE should be held responsible for the damage to their employees. A paycheck is a right not a privilege and the right to work in a safe environment is also every worker’s right.
Ensure your workplace is a safe place.
Remember – In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”
HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs including ‘Due Diligence’, ‘Chemical Safety Awareness’ and ‘Standard Operating Procedures’. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.