Asbestos Negligence Exposed

February 19, 1999


Please note that you will need a copy of RealPlayer installed on your computer in order to view the following video file(s).

Download a RealMedia version (.rm)



Asbestos Negligence Exposed
Asbestos Negligence Exposed
dated February 15, 1999

Finally , after being hidden for 40 years in government files, the truth about the horrendous working conditions at the Holmes facilities in Sarnia has been revealed. The Occupational Health Clinic for Ontario Workers has issued their report on the Government of Ontario documents, which chronicle the history of asbestos pollution in the workplace at the Caposite and Holmes Insulation Foundry.

Jim Brophy
Dir. Occupational Health Clinic for Ontario Workers

"To read hundreds and hundreds of pages of ministry documents which chronicle horrendous exposures thousands of times over what we would consider safe and many, many times over what they considered to be safe; and knowing the health consequences for workers that would now face excess cancer respiratory risk because of this, their failure, the government's failure, the employers failure, to take any steps to protect and to prevent such exposures, it was just devastating."

The documents show government officials knew about the danger and nothing was done. And even when clean up and cease operation orders were issued, the company ignored them and the government did nothing.

Jim Brophy
Dir. Occupational Health Clinic for Ontario Workers

"In the over thirty years, the thirty-five years that they looked at Caposite and the Holmes insulation plant there was only one prosecution and that was over a case in the mid seventies when a worker lost his finger in an accident."

CAW National President Buzz Hargrove was a personal friend with one of the victims of the Holmes Foundry tragedy.

Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

"The thing that Bob Clark said to me two days before he died, in a phone call to my office, and I talked to him every two or three weeks, was Buzz you can't do anything for me and most of our people, other than try and get them compensation, but by God the obligation on the union is to do everything you can to make sure this doesn't happen to workers in the future"

At a press conference announcing the results of the report commissioned by the CAW, Hargrove called for the Harris government to restore the number of industrial hygienist inspectors and reinstate the worker health and safety training programs.

Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

"There can't be any argument that we can't leave the health and safety of workers to employers and to government. We need laws and we need to strengthen the hands of unions in dealing with employers in this very important area."

CAW "Fighting Back Makes a Difference."


Print Print  Send to a friend Send to a friend  Feedback Feedback