Pro-Asbestos Group in Canada Announces Closure

Good news for those hoping for an eventual end of asbestos production in Canada, as a longtime pro-asbestos advocacy group has notified the Canadian government of plans to dissolve.

The Chrysotile Institute was founded in 184 and touted itself as promoting the “adoption and application of appropriate prevention and control measures, regulations, standards, work practices and techniques for the safe use of chrysotile.” To many, the group served as a mouthpiece for the country’s asbestos mining industry. It has claimed that asbestos is indeed safe, so long as it is handled safely.

The group is based in Quebec, the same province that contains the two remaining asbestos mines in Canada. While the existence of these mines has become a source of great tension and debate in recent years, the dissolving of The Chrysotile Institute could be seen by many as a victory for those who oppose Canadian asbestos production.

“”I see it as a real tipping point in the movement to get Canada out of the asbestos industry,”” said Winnipeg NDP MP Pat Martin – a longtime critic of Canadian asbestos production – according to the Leader Post. “”It’s just another demonstration of the death rattle of the asbestos industry in this country.””

Martin added that it was extra special that he heard of the institute’s dissolving on April 28, which was International Workers’ Memorial Day.

“”I’ve lost an awful lot of friends and colleagues to asbestos in my time as an asbestos miner and a carpenter in the building trades,”” he said. “”It was very poignant for me to learn that (the institute was closing) on the very day of mourning for injured and fallen workers with the flags at half mast — it was very, very fitting.””

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