CPIA's response to study on breast cancer risk in relation to occupations

2012-11-20

A new Study entitled: “Breast cancer risk in relation to occupations with exposure to carcinogens and endocrine disruptors: A Canadian case- control study” was published today in an online journal Environmental Health. The full Study can be found through the following link: http://www.cbcf.org/ontario/Documents/BrophyKeithFinalJournalArticle.pdf 

The purpose of the six year Study was to further characterize possible links between breast cancer risk and occupation, particularly in farming and manufacturing. The results indicated that across all sectors, women in jobs with potentially high exposures to carcinogens and endocrine disruptors had elevated breast cancer risk. Study results indicated specific sectors with elevated risk included: agriculture, bars-gambling, automotive plastics manufacturing and metalworking.  

Industry officials in Canada and the U.S. questioned the findings. In a statement released by the American Chemistry Council (ACC) related to this Study, they said:  

“Our members support strong enforcement of the standards and laws that protect worker health and safety as we continue to produce materials that enable healthier and more efficient lives, including the plastics that today’s automobiles safer and more fuel efficient than ever before.

“It is concerning that the authors could be over-interpreting their results and unnecessarily alarming workers. This study included no data showing if there was actual chemical exposures, from what chemicals, at what levels and over what period of time in any particular workplace. Although this is an important area of research, these findings are inconsistent with other research and should not be used to draw conclusions about the cause of cancer patterns in workers.”

The full ACC statement can be reached through this link: http://www.americanchemistry.com/Media/PressReleasesTranscripts/ACC-news-releases/Study-Does-Not-Demonstrate-That-Workplace-Exposures-Cause-Cancer.html

CPIA supports the ACC statement including the point that there should be strong support for enforcement of all regulations that protect worker health and safety.