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Asbestos Cancer: A Killer In Schools

In the UK 2,500 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma each year.

‘Asbestos Cancer’ affects people that have been exposed to asbestos, generally in the workplace. As it can take up to 20 to 40 years after exposure for symptoms that allow doctors to diagnose the disease to appear, this statistic may change with time.

The National Union of Teachers have analysed research and completed their own surveys which have led to them referring to mesothelioma as “a killer in schools”:

  • Teachers are now dying from mesothelioma at an average of 17 per year, up from three per year during 1980-85.
  • At least 319 teachers have died from mesothelioma since 1980, and 205 of these deaths have occurred since 2001. The real numbers are likely to be much higher because these figures do not include anyone over the age of 75.
  • Sue Stephens, a former primary school teacher, died from mesothelioma in 2016. The coroner reporting on Sue’s death concluded that it is most likely she was exposed to asbestos during her time in schools.
  • Much of the asbestos in schools was installed during the 1940s -1970s and is in a deteriorating state. When asbestos is in poor condition, fibres are more likely to be released.  Therefore, phased removal, with priority given to the most dangerous materials, is the practical solution and is the only way to ensure that schools are safe.

Mesothelioma is usually a fatal disease with death occurring within 12 months of diagnosis.

Talk to our personal injury solicitors for advice on  making a claim. Relatives of people affected may also be able to claim compensation.

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