Harmed timber workers must be compensated – EPMU
May 1, 2008
New Massey research confirming timber workers are suffering serious health issue due to Pentachlorophenol (PCP) exposure will be welcome acknowledgement for suffering workers but now compensation must be provided says the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union.
The study confirms that exposure to PCP has left many timber workers with long-term health issues due to dioxin poisoning – a fact workers and their unions have been arguing for years.
EPMU national timber industry organiser Alan Clarence says affected EPMU members have been fighting for recognition of the harm done to them for over two decades.
“Now we have scientific proof of the damage PCP exposure has done to our members we will be expecting suitable compensation and monitoring to be undertaken.
“Dioxin poisoning can cause inter-generational health issues and we would expect that any system put in place to look after affected workers would also include their families.
“If anything this only highlights the need for workers to talk with their unions about chemicals they are handling as it is clear that many employers have no interest in the potential health issues they are exposing their workers to.”
The EPMU represents four thousand workers in the timber industry.