UnionsWA today welcomed an announcement by the WA Government that it has referred to the Law Reform Commission a review of compensation laws for victims of asbestos but warned that delay and detail will be key to securing justice.
Meredith Hammat, UnionsWA Secretary said:
"This is a welcome move.
"At present a victim of, for example, asbestosis who settled a compensation claim many years ago, cannot return to the court if another asbestos related disease such as mesothelioma subsequently results in care and other needs as a result of asbestos exposure.
"WA's laws are well below the standard of those elsewhere.
"WA had a long and highly profitable history of asbestos mining that has left us with many suffering workers and their families.
"The Barnett Government recently failed to support a private member's bill that would have reflected modern and more just practices.
"This step is in the right direction.
"However a legal review is unnecessary as functioning laws are already working in other states.
"More years of indecision by government will mean victims will die while they and their families go without care needs being properly met.
"The Barnett Government has a poor record on victim redress and compensation
"The fine print needs to be seen as soon as possible."