The senate inquiry received a submission by the national construction union stating that building materials contaminated with asbestos, cheap glass and formaldehyde are slipping through the inspection of custom officials.

Mr. Brad Parker, assistant national secretary of Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) Construction Division noted that people come across these contaminated materials every single day as part of their normal routine. From cheap glass that explodes, the foul smell of formaldehyde, to cancer-causing asbestos–all these are putting their health and safety at serious risk.

Thrifty contractors who tend to skimp on building materials are working to save bucks by patronizing cheap and substandard materials from dodgy suppliers. Mr. Parker said, “These products are only slightly cheaper than Australian-made products, which comply with the law and do not contain poisonous asbestos.”

The Australian Council of Trade Unions assistant secretary, Michael Borowick said that stronger penalties and stronger border force must be implemented to keep these lethal products at bay. Mr. Parker on the other hand noted that the Australian Border Force is seriously under-resourced and it needs to be resourced so they can work effectively to protect the people from such health threats.

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