Dockyard asbestos victims to receive compensation

Government announces compensation scheme for asbestos victims and their families

Asbestos victims will be compensated in a scheme announced in today’s budget.

Shipyard workers or their families who got sick because of asbestos will be receiving compensation.

Finance Minister Edward Scicluna said government is currently in talks with former dockyard employees to pave the way forward.

“Government is expecting that when all facts are in hand, appropriate compensation is granted to the former employees and their families,” Scicluna said.

A number of shipyard workers had in 2015 sued the Director General of Public Health, the CEO of the Occupational Health and Safety Authority and the Attorney General in 2015 over claims that they were exposed to the carcinogenic asbestos at their place of work.

They claimed to have been exposed to the carcinogenic material without adequate safety precautions being taken, despite it being a known fact that inhaling asbestos fibres caused cancer.

The asbestos mineral was commonly used in the manufacturing industry for its resilience to damage by heat, electricity and chemicals. In the 1970s, it was discovered to be highly carcinogenic and was widely banned.

As it has been doing in the past years, government will also be allocating €9 million for 5,500 people from various entities who have passed through past injustices.