15 Years of Asbestos Awareness and Prevention Victories from Capitol Hill – and More to Come 

VIDEOS: Asbestos: The Killer You Can’t See” ||  “Asbesto: El asesino que no puede” ||  “Асбест: убийца, которого вы не видите“ ||  “एस्बेस्टोस: द किलर आप देख नहीं सकते”  ||  “Amianto: O assassino que você não pode” ||  “L’amiante: le tueur que vous ne voyez pas”

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Featured on April 2, 2019

Asbestos is a known carcinogen and there is no safe level of exposure.

Press Release (Russian): Организация по информированию о заболеваниях, вызываемых асбестом, (ADAO) проводит 15-ю ежегодную «Всемирную неделю осведомленности об асбесте» с 1 по 7 апреля 2019 года

Each year, the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) dedicates April 1-7 to increasing awareness of asbestos and preventing exposure by bringing together experts and victims from around the world to share, learn, and take action. To view all 7 days of Global Asbestos Awareness Week (GAAW) content, please click hereAlso, be sure to follow the conversation on social media with our GAAW hashtag: #2019GAAW.

Today, we’re highlighting the lawmakers and fellow advocacy groups who work day in and day out to eliminate asbestos-caused diseases worldwide. These “Champions of Change” in Washington, DC, and around the world are instrumental in the global struggle to ban asbestos, whether it be by passing legislation, caring for victims of asbestos-linked disease, or working to educate the public about this carcinogen. Today will also feature the story of Day Two Ambassador: Julie Gundlach.

Without a ban, asbestos remains legal and lethal in nearly 70% of countries around the world, including the United States. This year, however, ADAO experienced momentous legislative progress. The Alan Reinstein Ban Asbestos Now Act (ARBAN) of 2019 was introduced in both chambers of Congress by Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI), and Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ). Along with these four dedicated champions, there are more than 40 incredible cosponsors and powerful endorsees.

ARBAN is cosponsored by some of the country’s leading presidential candidates in the Senate, including Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN). Other senators supporting it include longtime anti-asbestos champion Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT), as well as Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Benjamin Cardin (D-MD), Richard Durbin (D-IL),  Ed Markey (D-MA), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Ron Wyden (D-OR), and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT).

In the House, ARBAN is co-sponsored by Reps. Nanette Barragán (D-CA), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Yvette Clarke (D-NY), Steve Cohen (D-TN), Peter DeFazio (D-OR), Debbie Dingell (D-MI), Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Hank Johnson (D-GA), Jared Huffman (D-CA), Joseph P. Kennedy III (D-MA), Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL), Ted Lieu (D-CA), Betty McCollum (D-MN), James P. McGovern (D-MA), Jerry McNerney (D-CA), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), Mark Pocan (D-WI), Mike Quigley (D-IL), Jamie Raskin (D-MD), Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE), Linda Sánchez (D-CA), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Kurt Schrader (D-OR), Darren Soto (D-FL), Paul Tonko (D-NY), and Nydia Velázquez (D-NY).

The bill is endorsed by many of our longtime partners in advocacy, including the AFL-CIO; the American Public Health Association; the Environmental Information Association; the Environmental Working Group; the Global Ban Asbestos Network (GBAN); International Association of Fire Fighters; Less Cancer; Natural Resources Defense Council; Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families; United States Public Interest Research Groups; Toxic-Free Future; and internationally, Associação Brasileira dos Expostos ao Amianto.

It took years of legislative advocacy with a lot of champions working together to get us to this point.

We would also like to extend our sincerest congratulations to Canada for banning asbestos late last year and setting an example for the rest of the world. We hope to soon follow in the footsteps of those who are able to recognize the threats and dangers of asbestos and ban this lethal carcinogen.

Please join ADAO in thanking these many named and unnamed Champions of Change. We are excited to collaborate and achieve greater, higher milestones with them at ADAO’s 15th International Asbestos Awareness and Prevention Conference.

Together, we make change happen.

Linda Reinstein

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Special thanks to our 2019 Platinum Sponsor Motley Rice LLC.