FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 24, 2019
PRESIDENT OF ASBESTOS DISEASE AWARENESS ORGANIZATION MEETS WITH EPA OFFICIAL TO DISCUSS EPA’S FLAWED ASBESTOS EVALUATION PROCESS
Delivers Letter from 26 Scientists in Support of EPA Career Staff Whose Expertise was Ignored at the Risk of Public Health, per internal emails provided to the New York Times
Washington, DC––Linda Reinstein, president of the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization, the largest asbestos-victim advocacy organization, released the following statement today as she met with Alexandra Dunn, the EPA official tasked with overseeing the agency’s regulation of asbestos.
“This EPA has promoted the false narrative that they have “all but” banned asbestos, but the truth is asbestos continues kills thousands of Americans each year and still presents a clear and present danger to public health.
Assistant Administrator Dunn and EPA leadership have ignored the advice of their own experts, often in favor of chemical industry insiders, as reported time and again by the New York Times. On May 9th, the Times reported their careers civil servants had expressed deep concerns about the agency’s approach to evaluating the risk asbestos poses to public health–specifically several ominous exclusions in the current risk evaluation–but were again ignored.
Those concerns have not been ignored by advocates, scientists, and victims. Today, representing thousands of asbestos-disease victims and their families, I delivered a letter signed by 26 renowned scientists who urged Ms. Dunn to reconsider the points raised by her own staff.
“Until these exclusions are eliminated from the asbestos risk evaluation being conducted by EPA the risks of asbestos to public health will be seriously flawed and dangerously understated. We urge you to revisit the concerns of these dedicated civil servants as you continue your work on asbestos,” the letter reads.
Earlier this month Assistant Administrator. Dunn and I testified before Congress at a hearing for the Alan Reinstein Ban Asbestos Now Act of 2019. During her testimony, Ms. Dunn made a number of statements I found deeply disturbing. I hope our meeting today will help her see the serious flaws in the approach to asbestos risk she is leading.
EPA needs to put the health of the American public ahead of the profit margins of the chemical industry and take bold action now to ban asbestos once and for all.”
For more information:
Courtney Hytower, UpShift Strategies
About the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization
The Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) was founded by asbestos victims and their families in 2004. ADAO is the largest non-profit in the U.S. dedicated to providing asbestos victims and concerned citizens with a united voice through our education, advocacy, and community initiatives. ADAO seeks to raise public awareness about the dangers of asbestos exposure, advocate for an asbestos ban, and protect asbestos victims’ civil rights. For more information, visit www.asbestosdiseaseawareness.org.