On 2nd June, IOSH teamed up with BOHS and HSE in Birmingham for the first of a series of meetings to raise awareness of occupational cancer. Health and safety professionals at the meeting were informed they can become “sung heroes” by taking the necessary steps to prevent people from inhaling silica dust in the workplace.

As part of IOSH’s No Time to Lose campaign, the first joint presentation from IOSH, BOHS and HSE explained the health risks associated with exposure to respirable crystalline silica, also known as RCS. Members of the IOSH Midland Branch who attending the meeting also heard in more detail about protecting workers, and were provided with useful information and guidance on controlling exposure to RCS.

Attendees also learnt that exposure to RCS not only causes silicosis and other breathing problems. Research has shown that approximately 800 people per year in the UK die from lung cancer as a result of exposure to RCS at work for an extended amount of time, with 900 new cases being diagnosed every year.

In regards to the presentation, entitled “Working together to beat occupational cancer – spotlight on silica” – Branch Chair, Mohammed Basharat, said:
“There are so many people out there working in safety, health and wellbeing and we are all trying to protect workers. The fact we had three organisations come together and share their expertise with us is fantastic.”

To find out more about the meeting and what was discussed, you can read the full details on the IOSH website.