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The federal government is working on silicosis strategy

Photo: Federal govt working on silicosis strategy
The federal government is working on ways to address the unfolding silicosis crisis after the death of a Gold Coast man.

The federal government says it will update health guidelines and educate stonemasons about the risks of inhaling dust in response to an unfolding silicosis crisis.

Calls for a national reaction to diagnoses of the occupational lung disease were followed by the death of Gold Coast stonecutter Anthony White on Saturday.

Doctors discovered Mr White had the disease in November 2017 after he'd breathed in crystalline silica dust found in engineered stone.

He is believed to be the first tradie to die of silicosis in Australia, and his brother, Shane Parata, has also been diagnosed.
Safe Work Australia is prioritising work to address health risks linked to dust exposure in the workplace, federal Industrial Relations Minister Kelly O'Dwyer said.

"The standard for crystalline silica dust occupational exposure is currently under review by Safe Work Australia, and proposed exposure levels are currently out for public consultation," she said.

Safe Work Australia is working on ways to raise awareness about ways to cut risks from silica dust, developing an educational campaign for workers and will update health monitoring guides.

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