Kathleen Ruff, member of the Board of Directors of the Rideau Institute and human rights activist, was featured in the International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, with her editorial entitled “Quebec and Canadian governments end their historic support of the asbestos industry.” The piece covers the Canadian government’s pressure on federal health officials to stay silent on the asbestos issue.
Health officials in the Canadian government are gagged. Even though their mandate is to protect health, they are not allowed to support scientific evidence to protect public health, if the scientific evidence does not conform with the government’s political agenda. The asbestos issue is a disturbing example of this political corruption of public health policy.
Health officials have a duty to put forward, without fear or favour, the clear, scientific evidence on health risks, even when – or especially when – this information goes against vested interests. It is a duty that health officials and health agencies, under the control of the Canadian government, are not allowed to fulfill.
The full editorial is available online.
For more information about Kathleen Ruff’s work on asbestos, visit Right On Canada.