April 1-7 is Global Asbestos Awareness Week and is sponsored by the Asbestos Awareness Disease Organization (ADAO). This awareness initiative aims to bring light to the dangers of asbestos to prevent exposure and asbestos-related diseases. Learn more about the goals of this week long event and how you can participate.
What is Global Asbestos Awareness Week?
Global Asbestos Awareness Week (GAAW) is an event celebrated every year to raise awareness about the dangers of asbestos exposure.
Sponsored by the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO), this week-long event strives to educate the public to prevent the development of asbestos-related diseases.
Founded in 2004 by Linda Reinstein and Doug Larkin, the ADAO is the largest independent organization to advocate for asbestos victims. The ADAO strives to prevent asbestos-related diseases through global education, community initiatives, and advocacy for asbestos bans.
Although there have been many efforts to eliminate asbestos as a whole, the material still poses a risk to the health of millions. Today, asbestos use remains legal in nearly 70% of the world – including in the U.S.
Asbestos exposure is the only known cause of a deadly cancer called mesothelioma and can lead to other asbestos-related illnesses. This deadly mineral was heavily used from the 1930s until the early 1980s, when the general public became aware of its risks.
In recent years, the ADAO and Global Asbestos Awareness Week have helped to make strides in the fight against asbestos. The ADAO has worked with the U.S. Senate in an effort to pass 16 Asbestos Awareness Week legislations, as well as six asbestos warnings from the U.S. Surgeon General.
Fast Facts About Asbestos Exposure
The ADAO shares important statistics to educate the public about consequences of asbestos use.
ADAO’s Top 10 Asbestos Facts:
- Asbestos kills an estimated 40,000 Americans each year.
- Asbestos is not safe or controlled in any circumstance.
- This fatal mineral can be found in homes, schools, workplaces, and more.
- All types of asbestos can lead to mesothelioma, lung cancer, asbestosis, and more.
- The U.S. is the only industrialized country in the west that does not have an asbestos ban.
- 1 in 3 deaths due to occupational cancer are caused by asbestos exposure.
- The U.S. used an estimated 450 metric tons of asbestos in 2020.
- The chlor-alkali (saltwater electrolysis) industry accounted for about 100% of U.S. asbestos consumption in 2020.
- There are several substitutes that can be used instead of asbestos.
- The leading global producers of asbestos are Russia, Kazakhstan, China, Brazil, and Zimbabwe.
How to Participate in Global Asbestos Awareness Week
According to the ADAO, asbestos kills more than 200,000 people globally each year. By participating in Global Asbestos Awareness Week, you can take part in preventing these deadly diseases and saving the lives of millions.
Working together to advocate for asbestos bans and educate the public about the dangers can help promote safety in our communities.
There are several ways you and your loved ones can join the cause and participate in Global Asbestos Awareness Week.
Some ways to take part in Global Asbestos Awareness Week include:
- Advocate for full asbestos bans in your local area
- Donate to the ADAO to support research
- Share facts about asbestos exposure on social media
- Share your story to be featured on the ADAO’s website
- Sign the ADAO’s petition to ban asbestos use
- Wear blue for asbestos awareness
This year, the theme for Global Asbestos Awareness Week is “Asbestos: One Word. One Week. One World.” Each day of GAAW also focuses on a certain asbestos-related topic.
The focuses for this year’s GAAW includes:
- Bans on mining, manufacturing, and other uses of asbestos across the globe
- Better compliance and enforcement of current asbestos laws/regulations
- Overall asbestos exposure prevention
- Strengthening of international relations to protect the health of the public
With the help of sponsors such as Simmons Hanly Conroy, Global Asbestos Awareness Week 2022 aims to reach individuals all around the world.
Global Asbestos Awareness Week can unite those who have been affected by asbestos-related diseases. You can support those who have been affected by advocating for change and bringing awareness to the dangers of asbestos use.
Get Help For Asbestos-Related Diseases
The Mesothelioma Hope team understands how an asbestos-related disease can be devastating to a family.
Thankfully, there are many support options and resources available if you or a loved one has been a victim of asbestos exposure and developed mesothelioma, lung cancer, or asbestosis.
Speak with one of our caring patient advocates today to learn more about getting the support your family needs.