EWG research showed that 10,000 people die each year of asbestos-related diseases and unearthed documents showing that corporate executives concealed for decades the dangers of making or handling asbestos-containing materials.
The U.S. Senate's latest scheme to limit the liability of asbestos makers would cut benefits dramatically to people dying of the fatal asbestos cancer, mesothelioma, and pre-empt laws in 12 states, and court customs in at least 8 more, that guarantee a speedy trial to terminally ill plaintiffs. Younger victims, who are more likely to have dependent children, huge medical bills, and substantial wage loss are hit hardest by the cuts in compensation. Everyone dying of mesothelioma, some 2,500 people in 2002, would have their cases thrown out of court and be forced to wait for nine months before they could restart their cases or file a claim with the national asbestos trust. Many hundreds of these people would die waiting.
In the wake of the W.R. Grace indictment for asbestos poisoning in Libby, Mont., Australian building products company James Hardie Industries is working hard to make sure it escapes responsibility for asbestos building products and brake linings it exported to the U.S. from the 1960s to the 1980s.Read More
Texas legislature is poised to consider legislation limiting the ability of the sick or dying to get their medical bills covered by the asbestos companies.Read More
As the Texas legislature begins consideration of controversial asbestos legislation that would restrict the legal rights of people injured by asbestos, hundreds of Texans continue to die of asbestos diseases each year.Read More
Newly uncovered documents from W.R. Grace show that the company exposed workers in at least 14 of its insulation factories around the country to lethal asbestos dust at levels above those in the now notorious Grace-owned mine in Libby, Mont.Read More
The AFL-CIO expressed its dissatisfaction with the end of negotiations seeking an agreement between asbestos companies, insurers and those sick or dying from the harmful material.Read More
The Republican Senate leadership's asbestos bailout bill appears dead for now, after negotiations stalled May 7. The bill would have denied thousands of Americans their day in court, reduced damage awards to victims of asbestos diseases, and run out of money well before the epidemic of asbestos deaths peak.Read More
As U.S. Senate leaders negotiate a trust fund for Americans sick or dying from asbestos, new facts are transforming the debate. Despite what many Americans believe, asbestos is still being used, and continues to cause new public health problems.Read More
A six-month EWG Action Fund investigation into asbestos in America uncovered an epidemic of asbestos disease and mortality that affects every state and virtually every community in the country. Asbestos kills 10,000 Americans each year, 2,500 more than skin cancer, and that number appears to be increasing. While most of these individuals are workers exposed decades ago, asbestos is not yet banned and more than 1 million people are currently exposed to asbestos on the job. Millions more are exposed to asbestos in the environment. As long as asbestos continues to be used in consumer products and remains available for dispersion in millions of buildings and homes where it was used liberally for half a century, it will continue to kill and injure thousands of innocent people for decades to come.Read More