McIntyre Powder Project
The McIntyre Powder Project is a voluntary registry established by a miner's daughter Janice Martell to document health issues (particularly neurological) in miners or other workers who were exposed to McIntyre Powder aluminum dust in their workplaces.
The aim of the project is to gather information on the types of health issues found in workers who were exposed to McIntyre Powder aluminum dust, for the purposes of establishing the need for further research into the long-term health impacts of aluminum dust exposure, and to seek compensation for those workers who suffered health issues related to their occupational exposure.
Ultimately, the Project will seek legislative changes to improve workplace safety and access to compensation for all workers who suffer health issues related to occupational disease or injury.
These are not easy cases. Other exposures at work (like other metals or chemicals that are neurotoxic, or acids that may make Aluminum more toxic) are relevant. Family genetics or exposure to Aluminum outside work might also help explain how work exposures did or did not help to cause a disease. And because Aluminum can be stored in bones and then released years later, lifetime exposures must be explored.
Information from the intake clinics will be reviewed by OHCOW staff and physicians with support from other experts to see what current science can tell us and to decide whether individual medical testing or group research projects could tell us more. Individual reports will be provided whenever possible and general information will be made public. But that will take some time.
It is now more than 35 years since McIntyre Powder was last used in Ontario mines. Despite advances in laboratory testing, further research in this area is difficult because the miners with the highest levels of Aluminum dust exposure have already passed away. It is impossible to predict the results of OHCOW’s work, but miners and their families are entitled to whatever answers can be found
OHCOW was invited by the McIntyre Powder Project and the United Steelworkers to participate in intake clinics for exposed workers. Our two day clinics were established in Timmins in May 2016 and Sudbury in October 2016. It was OHCOW’s role to conduct examinations and collect information on the working history and medical backgrounds of miners both with us and that have passed. Through these examinations we are aiming to determine the health effects that McIntyre Powder has caused on not only for miners but also their families.
For more information on McIntyre Powder and the McIntyre Powder Projects click here McIntyre Powder Project