WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO), which serves as a global leader in ending asbestos exposure through awareness, prevention, and policy, issued the following statement from President and Co-Founder Linda Reinstein (who attended the signing ceremony) in response to President Obama signing the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act.
“Today, a monumental step was taken in the fight against asbestos, a known human carcinogen for which there is no safe level of exposure. By signing into law the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, President Barack Obama ensured the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will have the necessary tools to once and for all ban asbestos in America. Not only will this law help end the man-made asbestos crisis that still to this day takes as many as 15,000 American lives each year, but it will also empower the EPA to finally test and regulate the thousands of chemicals present in our daily lives.
“I was honored to attend the signing ceremony on behalf of the ADAO community. Our staff and volunteers participated in countless hours of negotiations and numerous hearings to ensure that the collective voice of asbestos victims was heard loud and clear by policy makers. I am so very proud of each and every member of our community, from those who traveled to Washington, DC to share their stories to those who reached out to their elected officials from their homes. Each person played a critical role in this accomplishment and it is a privilege to represent our community at today’s event.
“But make no mistake, we are not yet at the finish line. There is still much work to be done, and time is of the essence. Under the new law, the EPA may take as long as seven years to assess, regulate, and ban asbestos. In that time, an estimated 100,000 Americans will lose their lives to asbestos-related diseases and countless more will be needlessly exposed to asbestos. The EPA must limit delay by including asbestos in the list of the first chemicals it evaluates and quickly exercising its authority under this legislation to ban asbestos.
“The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety Act has the potential to improve the health and safety of millions of American families. Just as asbestos was the poster child for reform, the success of this law now hinges on the ability of the EPA to ban asbestos. ADAO calls on President Obama and Congress to continue their efforts to protect Americans from toxic chemicals by working with the EPA to ensure this law is implemented as swiftly as possible.
“Until a complete ban is in place, asbestos will still be found in construction materials, automobile parts, and even children’s toys. The ADAO community knows firsthand the deadly and devastating impact asbestos has on American families, and sincerely thanks every elected official, staffer, and volunteer who recognized that lives are at stake and fought to ensure American families were prioritized over the chemical industry’s profits. Because of their hard work and dedication we are finally on the path to victory.”
About the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization
The Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) is a global leader in combining education, advocacy, and community initiatives to prevent and end asbestos exposure. ADAO seeks to raise public awareness about the dangers of asbestos, advocate for an asbestos ban, and protect asbestos victims’ civil rights. ADAO, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, does not make legal referrals. For more information, visit www.asbestosdiseaseawareness.org.