Unite launches asbestos awareness campaign20 January 2015
Unite the Union raises awareness of the dangers of asbestos
Leading trades union law firm Thompsons Solicitors welcomes the campaign launched today by Unite the Union to raise awareness about the dangers of asbestos exposure.
As part of its campaign, Unite has pledged to continue highlighting the hazardous effects of asbestos and will issue new guidance to safety reps on how to avoid exposure to asbestos at work, as well as providing support to members and families diagnosed with asbestos disease.
Asbestos use was finally banned from the UK in 1999, but remains present in the buildings of many private and public sector workplaces. Employers have a duty to protect workers from the well-known risk of fatal disease caused by inhaling asbestos fibres.
More than 2,500 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma, a fatal asbestos-induced cancer, in the UK every year, bringing the total estimated annual asbestos related deaths to over 5,000, including lung cancer.
Head of asbestos litigation at Thompsons Solicitors, Ian McFall, said: “In the UK alone we have already witnessed the tragedy of 60,000 deaths from mesothelioma and a further 90,000 people are expected to die from the effects of past asbestos exposure.
“The UK has one of the highest rates of mesothelioma in the world; a damning legacy of employer negligence.
“Thompsons is proud to work closely with Unite Legal Services to support members and their families who have suffered the devastating effects of asbestos disease. Unite's campaign is vital to continue raising awareness about the dangers of asbestos, to protect workers from the risk of exposure and drive up workplace safety standards.”
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.