The encounter with Vice Minister Santelli

After the National Asbestos Demonstration of October 8th in Rome, a meeting took place at the Ministry of Labour, at the presence of Vice Minister, Jole Santelli.

The following requests were addressed to Ms. Santelli from the Asbestos National Coordination:

– Financing of the National Plan for Asbestos and its definitive approval;

– Extension of the Fund for asbestos victims to family members and citizens with certified asbestos-related diseases;

– Social security benefits;

– Withdrawal of appeal to the Council of State.

After the obtainment of solidarity from the President of the Chamber of Deputes, Mrs. Boldrini, and all the other CD members, following a long debate, the Asbestos National Coordination was able to concentrate the discussion on the National Plan for Asbestos, pointing out that for this Plan twenty-one years have gone by and can’t wait other twenty years for its final approval. In fact, the contents stated were a sacrifice faced by the Asbestos National Coordination and three ministries. So the Ministry of Health has meant that it was quite exhaustive, with availability of funding, while the part concerning the Ministries of Environment and Labour was not yet completed. It was therefore necessary to verify if there was willingness to enter financing, just a small amount of funds, for the years 2014, 2015 and 2016, in order to obtain the approval of the Plan, considering all the cases of deaths, diseases on a daily basis and asbestos materials existing in the territories.

Ms. Santelli committed to hear the Chief of Cabinet immediately, as a person informed about the Plan and who took part to its drafting, to get more detailed information about, and to verify with colleagues from the Ministries of Health and Environment the issues which have blocked the path that should lead to the approval of the Plan. She will also verify the evolution of the appeal to the Council of State for its full withdrawal.

She asked the Coordination to send to INAIL the certification related to non-recognition of occupational diseases and survivor annuity.

Mrs. Santelli promised to find a solution to make the social security benefits from exposure to asbestos available, this relatively to retirements blocked by Law Fornero with appropriate explanatory communication to the subject, without affecting the same law .

How’s with the National Plan for Asbestos?

MP Maria Antezza (Democratic Party), recalling that “…the resolution of the European Parliament last year reiterated asbestos-related threats to health in workplaces and prospects for the elimination of all the asbestos, and inviting Member States to carry the phasing out of asbestos forward as soon as possibile…”, presented together with colleagues Biondelli, Arlotti, Bargero, Amoddio, Iacono, Boccuzzi and Mattiello, a question to the Government in order to know how it intends to proceed for the resolution of unpostponable activities and remediation of sites contaminated by asbestos, such as public buildings (schools, hospitals and public offices), identified during the mapping activity related to asbestos.

“We therefore ask the government – says MP Antezza – which is the status of the National Asbestos Plan administrative process, how many resources are dedicated and are intended for tasks of securing and remediation of structures and artifacts heavily contaminated with asbestos, as well as regional mapping financing. The Government has to consider the possibility of allowing local authorities to derogate from the Stability Pact for remediation.”