Schwarten backs down on faulty asbestos regulations

8 May 2010 9:59 AMJann Stuckey

8 May 2010

Eight months after an investigation found asbestos handling regulations were not working Minister Schwarten has finally taken steps to change them, the LNP said today.

Shadow Minister for Public Works Jann Stuckey said today’s announcement of new regulations for asbestos contractors was an embarrassing admission that the former asbestos regulation scheme had failed to protect Queenslanders from potential exposure to asbestos.

“In September last year, a damning Workplace Health & Safety Queensland Investigation found asbestos handling regulations were inadequate protection for Queenslanders,” Ms Stuckey said.

“Despite repeated incidents of students being exposed to asbestos from the Gold Coast to Mackay, Minister Schwarten defended a system that continued to expose children to hazardous asbestos,” Ms Stuckey said.

“This was even after he was warned the regulations needed to be tightened so schools would actually know when asbestos contractors would be working on school sites.

“Now eight months later he has finally admitted he was presiding over a flawed system and moved to correct it.

“Queenslanders deserve better than this lazy minister in a lazy government who was more interested in defending himself than protecting Queenslanders from exposure to deadly asbestos dust.”
Media Contact: Jann Stuckey 0439 755 919