Claire Baker, a Fife Labour MSP says that asbestos victims should be better cared for.
She was speaking out following the death of her father one year ago.
Her father died from exposure to asbestos.
Mrs Baker has recently joined the appeal to do more for asbestos victims and teamed up with the charity group Asbestos Action.
Claire’s father was former Fife councillor, Jim Brennan.
Mr Brennan died at the age of 70 on the 25th February 2017, just 12 months following his diagnosis.
The cause of his death was the lung cancer mesothelioma, caused by being exposed to asbestos when he worked as a sheet metal worker in the 1970’s.
Speaking about her father’s death, Mrs Baker said, “As a politician I always thought I had a keen awareness of issues related to asbestos,”
“But it wasn’t until my father passed that I truly understood it and understood the anger of thousands of Scots because of how avoidable these deaths are.”
“Although we got the support my dad needed it was sometimes a struggle and I’ve witnessed a real postcode lottery when it comes to people receiving the medical or pastoral care they need and deserve.
“We need to see improvements to bridge these gaps but also to secure the support needed and educate the next generation of health and social workers to make them aware of the impacts on individuals and families because conditions linked to asbestos will continue for decades to come.”
There are different types of asbestos related diseases, which can range from benign conditions like pleural plaques, to more serious conditions and terminal cancers like mesothelioma.
To date, there is no cure for mesothelioma, and once a person is diagnosed with the condition their health deteriorates rapidly.
Even though employers have long known the risks associated with asbestos, they still failed to protect their workforce, especially within the construction industry.
The death rate of asbestos victims continues to rise each year due to the long latency period.
Asbestos Action have produced a new support booklet for anyone affected by asbestos.
John Fearn, a Manager of the group said, “Ms Baker might be a politician but she’s also a daughter who lost her dad to a devastating illness.”
“The tragic thing is her experience is just one of thousands seen over the decades but we don’t expect the number of cases to drop or even plateau in the near future.”
“That’s why we need health boards, councils and other relevant bodies to put the right measures in place now so those affected get the right support deserve from day one.”
For more information, you can visit www.asbestosaction.org.uk or call 01382 225715.
Whether you need an asbestos management survey, a refurbishment demolition survey, or just some advice on asbestos surveys in general, contact us on 0161 763 3727 or by visiting https://www.armco.org.uk/
Finally, for all your asbestos training needs call 0161 761 4424 or visit https://www.armcoasbestostraining.co.uk/to book an asbestos awareness training course.
Published Mar 12, 2018