Labour Studies Visiting Speaker: Janice Martell

23 March 2017
Between 1943 and 1980, at least 20,000 miners were dosed by
their employers with McIntyre Powder – respirable
aluminum/aluminum oxide dust – on the unproven theory that it
would prevent silicosis. Under threat of job loss and in the
absence of informed consent, these miners became unwilling
lab rats in a government-sanctioned industrial disease
experiment. No other humans have been exposed to aluminum
in this form, intensity, duration, or by similar route of
administration (an inhalable, airborne suspension). The impacts
on their health remain unknown. The daughter of one of the
miners in the McIntyre Powder Experiment, Janice Martell
established the McIntyre Powder Project to seek answers about
the aluminum dust program and its long-term health
impacts. Janice will share her research discoveries about the
history of the McIntyre Powder experiment, her experiences in
challenging the workplace compensation system, and the stories
of mining families that were left in the dust.