The member died after developing mesothelioma
The Unite member worked at an Essex-based power station between 1952 and 1970, before taking a similar role as an electrician for a Dagenham factory, where he worked until 1990.
At both places of employment, he and his colleagues would perform repairs on machinery lagged with asbestos. They would also work near laggers who were removing old asbestos lagging and replacing it with new lagging, causing dust to circulate throughout the power station and Dagenham factory. At no point was the electrician provided with protective equipment to stop him from inhaling the deadly substance.
"Dad become very reliant on my brother and I after his diagnosis."
During mid-2014, after suffering from breathing difficulties, medical tests found that he had developed the deadly asbestos disease, mesothelioma. Within months of diagnosis he required constant care and was moved to a nursing home. He sadly died soon after, aged 86.
His son, who is also a Unite member, turned to Unite Legal Services and Thompsons Solicitors for legal support. The asbestos specialists at Thompsons Solicitors, who have decades of experience in the Dagenham and wider Essex area, assisted with his compensation claim and secured a substantial sum.
“Dad become very reliant on my brother and I after his diagnosis,” said the son. “This hit us hard, because we were all so used to him living independently. It was something that he prided himself on. Suddenly, he needed round-the-clock care, which was horrible to see.
“My dad, brother and I have been Unite members for years, so we knew exactly where to turn for help. Its legal services were great and put us in contact with the experts at Thompsons. Our family began to understand the number of people that tragically suffer from asbestos disease, not just in Essex but across the UK.”
Peter Kavanagh, London and Eastern regional secretary from Unite the Union, said: “It is always terrible to hear the pain and suffering our members have endured, simply because they were not protected from asbestos while at work. In this instance, our member was routinely exposed to the fatal dust for a significant proportion of his career, with no warning of the damage this could cause.
“With the help of Thompsons Solicitors’ specialist asbestos team, we were able to locate where and when he was exposed to asbestos, and support a compensation claim that was ultimately successful and paid to the family in full.”
Asbestos disease diagnosis? Talk to us for advice and support on how to secure compensation.
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease, we can support you with advice on how to make a claim.
The process will be explained in plain English and with no obligation – our priority is to provide you with the best, expert advice on whether you have a valid case for compensation, and to signpost you to further sources of support.
There are strict time limits applied to making a claim – usually three years from the date of diagnosis. It doesn’t matter if the exposure to asbestos took place – as it often does – decades ago, the three year time limit applies to the date of knowledge of diagnosis or date of death.
For further information, visit our How to Make A Compensation Claim page.