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Clarification on claims related to asbestos exposure on N.S. - N.L. ferry
Monday, September 8, 2008

St. John’s, NL -In a joint statement the Canadian Auto Workers Union and the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission of Newfoundland and Labrador (the Commission) clarified recent media coverage that may leave the impression that asbestos related claims for workers who worked on the Atlantic Freighter will be automatically accepted by the Commission.  

“Current and former workers of Marine Atlantic should be aware that both the employer, Marine Atlantic and the Commission accept the fact that workers were exposed to asbestos on the Atlantic Freighter,” said Sue Irvine, President of Local 4285.   

“The collection of information confirming exposure will not be necessary if a current or former worker on the Freighter files a claim for an asbestos related illness,” said Leslie Galway, CEO, the Commission. “This may mean that less time will be needed by the Commission during the process of determining whether there is entitlement to compensation.”  

While exposure to asbestos will not be questioned, other information, including a confirmed medical diagnosis of an asbestos related illness, acceptable length of asbestos exposure and required latency period (length of time from first asbestos exposure to onset of illness) is necessary in the majority of cases for the Commission to determine entitlement to compensation. 

Requests for additional information by workers can be directed to the CAW or the Commission. 

Deborah Inkpen
Director of Communications
Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission
Telephone: 709-778-1590 or 1-800-563-9000  

Sue Irvine
CAW Local 4285
Telephone: 1-902-794-7519 or 1-888-424-4285 

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