Letters: Asbestos

Some mornings set themselves apart from any other. Anyone who's lived one will never forget the feeling of waking up with what feels like a sick, weight in the pit of their stomachs on the day their doctor will reveal whether they have tested positive for a devastating illness. Today we share the story of one of those mornings for someone we met this week, Heidi Von Palleske. And we talk to former Conservative MP Chuck Strahl about his battle with an asbestos-related cancer and his decision to part with the Conservative Government.



Today's guest host was Mike Finnerty.

Part One of The Current

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Letters: Asbestos

On Monday, we first heard from Heidi von Palleske. Her father, Wolfgang von Palleske, died four years ago of mesothelioma, a cancer linked to asbestos exposure. He spent 25 years working with it, and every day, he would come home, shimmering with what his family called "fairy dust."

In the process, he unwittingly exposed them to asbestos ... and now, Heidi's mother has been diagnosed with mesothelioma and given six months to live. Many of you wrote in, in response to the story and we have the update you asked us for. When we heard from Heidi on Monday, she and her sister were waiting to find out if they, too, have mesothelioma. Heidi has those results now and she joined us in studio.

Six years ago, then-Conservative MP Chuck Strahl also was diagnosed with mesothelioma, long after he was exposed to asbestos while working in the logging industry. He's no longer in federal politics. But recently, he's been speaking out publicly, urging the Harper government to change its policy toward asbestos. Chuck Strahl was in Chilliwack, British Columbia.

* We did put in a request for Industry Minister Christian Paradis to come on the show today to talk about this issue, but haven't heard back from his office.

Well, we got a lot of mail on the link between asbestos and mesothelioma. And we had a bit of time left to read some of your letters. The Current's Heba Aly joined Mike Finnerty in studio to help read the mail.

Please, keep on sending us your thoughts about what we do here at The Current. Contact us here.

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