OTTAWA: After the latest push from unions and federal labor advocates, the Canadian government is moving to ban asbestos by 2018.
Science Minister Kirsty Duncan announced the long-awaited news in late December. The ban will apply to the manufacture of any products containing asbestos, as well as imports made with the deadly mineral. It could be extended to products already manufactured.
New Democrat Party Critic for Labour Sheri Benson introduced Bill C-321 in November to help speed the process. Despite a steep decline in global demand and Canada’s last asbestos mines closing in 2012, the Canadian government continued to drag its feet on meeting international anti-asbestos standards.
“I was proud to introduce Bill C-321 in the House of Commons to build consensus amongst my colleagues that we need a ban in Canada and to let the Liberal government know that the time for action is now,” Benson said.
Canada will join more than 50 other countries around the world that have banned asbestos.