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BC becomes first in Canada to license asbestos work

Anyone working with asbestos in British Columbia now requires a license.

This makes B.C. the first in Canada to implement a licensing requirement for this work, with the changes come following a stat from Worksafe BC that saw more than 500 claims for those who died from a disease relating to asbestos exposure. 61 of the 181 deaths in the workplace from last year were due to the exposure.

The province made new amendments made to the Workers Compensation Act last year, which now have more details.

Worksafe BC will be holding a certification program for workers involved in asbestos abatement, with the training set to start this summer, according to the province.

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The contractors must only use workers who are trained and certified to perform the job, with the goal of these changes is to make sure that both people and the environment are protected from the dangers of asbestos.

Contractors should be licensed by January 1 next year and can start applying for licensing this September.

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