PETERBOROUGH-Good news for some General Electric cancer victims today.
The WSIB says it has approved 10 cases that were previously denied. “Since the start of the WSIB’s review of GE Peterborough claims, 10 claims related to various forms of cancer that had previously been denied have since been allowed.” said a release from WSIB today. The original decision in a further 6 claims has been upheld.
The WSIB’s dedicated review team has been looking at more than 250 claims related to GE Peterborough that had not previously been allowed. Aaron Lazarus, Vice President, Communications at the WSIB says “New scientific research and information from the community is helping to shed new light on the substances people were exposed to. We are working to thoroughly review each claim as quickly as possible so that people have answers and the benefits they may be entitled to.”
That new scientific research and new information about the exposures people had to various chemicals and substances was provided recently by a coalition that includes GE employees, widows, the Union and more.
The coalition released a 170 page report on the research in May 2017. It was meant to back up claims made to the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board that had been denied. Hundred’s of workers have come forward claiming their illnesses including cancer were caused by the thousands of chemicals they were exposed to while working at the plant. The group which included the Occupational and Environmental Health Coalition and Unifor the Union, went back as far as 1945 to map the plant and document the chemicals used in each department. Officials at General Electric say the plant always met with industry standards at the time.
Click here for find our more about how they connected the dots between cancer and the chemicals.
The Occupational and Environmental Health Coalition of Peterborough (OEHCP)who also worked on the report told Kawartha 411 they are hopeful more cases will be resolved.
Since September 18th, the WSIB has received over 60 phone calls that have resulted in 30 new claims being filed. GE announced in August that it will be closing the Peterborough plant in September 2018 leaving about 358 people out of work.