Asbestos In Australia
A naturally occurring mineral, before its ban in December 2003, Australia was one of the highest users of asbestos.
Known as the Miracle Mineral of the Middle Ages, it is cheap, strong, fireproof, soundproof, an excellent insulator… so versatile, it was used in over 3000 products across industries in Australia.
What wasn’t made known until the mid-80’s is that asbestos is a carcinogen and causes disease such as asbestosis, lung cancer, pleural plaques and the terminal cancer, mesothelioma.
Reflections is actively REDUCING THE IMPACT of asbestos on the community and bringing HOPE to those affected, through:
- Awareness raising
- Promoting research into better treatment outcomes, and
- Supporting people affected by asbestos-related disease
We achieve this through a range of activities including advocacy for improved asbestos awareness training; the ongoing sharing of resources and information, particularly for home renovators in Australia’s growing DIY culture, and events such as Steeltoes & Stilettos.
With the average age of first exposure being 23, Reflections is proactive in ensuring young people, particularly those going into the trades, are empowered to make educated decisions when it comes to working on sites where asbestos may be present. Reflections’ determination and persistence has resulted in the inclusion of an asbestos awareness module into the Cert II in Pathways to Building and Construction.
Western Australia is fortunate to have some of the world’s leading experts in asbestos disease research based at the National Centre for Asbestos Related Disease (NCARD). While they work on finding a long-term treatment for mesothelioma, we need to be doing what we can to ensure people are not exposed to asbestos.