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Staff, women exposed to asbestos at federal prison in Dublin



An incarcerated woman wheels a trash can at FCI Dublin in 2004. 

The U.S. Office of Special Counsel has determined that management at Federal Correctional Institution Dublin in California violated OSHA standards by exposing staff and inmates to asbestos, validating a union complaint.

Leadership at the American Federation of Government Employees Local 3584 filed the whistleblower disclosure to expose the agency’s failure to address asbestos and mold contamination throughout the prison complex.

Acting Special Counsel Karen Gorman on Monday submitted the results of the investigation, which included an on-site visit in July 2022. 

Investigators watched incarcerated women stripping and buffing asbestos-containing floor tiles in violation of OSHA standards, although mold had been remediated by the time investigators visited, union officials said.

“We now call on Congress and its oversight committees to further investigate the failure by the Department of Justice and the Bureau of Prisons to provide full disclosure to the staff and inmates as to their exposure, as well as the need for proper medical surveillance,” AFGE Assistant General Counsel Ward Morrow said in a statement. 

The complaint was filed by union president Edward Canales, secretary-treasurer Susan Canales, and vice president Jose Lau.

The Bureau of Prisons did not immediately respond. 

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