House bill calls for asbestos database

Though bills to reform the nation’s toxic chemical laws have been introduced in both the House and Senate, Democratic lawmakers want to better protect people from being exposed to asbestos now.

Reps. Suzan DelBeneSuzan Kay DelBeneDemocrats say affordable housing would be a top priority in a Biden administration On The Money: McConnell not certain about fifth coronavirus package | States expected to roll out unemployment boost in late August | Navarro blasts 'stupid' Kodak execs On The Money: Economists flabbergasted after Congress leaves with no deal | Markets rise as the economy struggles | Retail sales slow in July MORE (D-Wash.) and Gene GreenRaymond (Gene) Eugene GreenTexas New Members 2019 Two Democrats become first Texas Latinas to serve in Congress Latina Leaders to Watch 2018 MORE (D-Texas) introduced the Reducing Exposure to Asbestos Database (READ) Act on Monday. The bill, which has been introduced in the Senate by Sens. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinThe Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Trump previews SCOTUS nominee as 'totally brilliant' Feinstein 'surprised and taken aback' by suggestion she's not up for Supreme Court fight Grand jury charges no officers in Breonna Taylor death MORE (D-Ill.) and Ed MarkeyEdward (Ed) John Markey3 reasons why Biden is misreading the politics of court packing Democrats shoot down talk of expanding Supreme Court Schumer: 'Nothing is off the table' if GOP moves forward with Ginsburg replacement MORE (D-Mass.), would update the Asbestos Information Act signed by President Reagan in 1988 and direct the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to maintain a publicly searchable online database of products and locations that contain asbestos. 

Asbestos is a known carcinogen that’s responsible for as many as 10,000 deaths in the U.S. each year.

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The bill would also force companies manufacturing, importing or handling asbestos-containing products to annually report information to the EPA about their products and any publicly accessible location in which the products have been known to be in the past year. 

"Thousands of Americans fall victim to asbestos-related illnesses each year,” Green said in a news release. “These tragedies might have been prevented with greater public knowledge of where asbestos is located.”