Asbestos Management Policy [June 23, 2011]


Asbestos Management Policy

June 23, 2011

To request an official copy of this policy, contact:

The Office of the Governing Council
Room 106, Simcoe Hall
27 Kings College Circle
University of Toronto
Toronto, Ontario

M5S 1A1

Phone: (416) 978-6576
Fax: (416) 978-8182

University of Toronto



The University of Toronto is committed to promoting the health, safety and well-being of its employees, students, visitors and contractors.

Asbestos, a fibrous material commonly used in building materials prior to 1980 because of its heat- resistant, chemical-resistant and insulative properties, continues to be present in a number of University buildings, in the form of sprayed fireproofing, insulation around piping and mechanical equipment, thermal and acoustic boards, plasters, asbestos cement products, and floor and ceiling tiles.  Serious health problems, such as asbestosis, lung cancer, and mesothelioma, are associated with inhalation of harmful levels of asbestos fibres.


Recognizing the hazards that may arise when asbestos fibres become airborne as a result of disturbance or deterioration, the University is committed to the strict management of all asbestos-containing materials in University buildings, and any activities which may disturb such materials.  The University has the responsibility to ensure that stringent controls are in place to prevent the potential exposure of individuals to harmful levels of asbestos.


This Policy applies to all buildings and structures, machinery and equipment owned, occupied or operated by the University of Toronto at all campuses and other locations. It applies to all employees and students of the University, to occupants of University buildings, and to external organizations who may come in contact with or disturb asbestos-containing materials in University buildings.


The University is committed to achieving the following objectives:

  • To exercise due diligence in protecting University employees from the potential health risks associated with hazardous exposure to airborne asbestos fibres;
  • To provide a safe and healthy work and study environment for employees, students, contractors and visitors, in accordance with the University's Health and Safety Policy;
  • To comply with the legislated requirements outlined under the Regulation respecting Asbestos on Construction Projects and in Buildings and Repair Operations (O.Reg. 278/05), made under the Occupational Health and Safety Act of Ontario;
  • To comply with this Policy and the University's Management Program.
  • The eventual removal of all asbestos-containing materials from University buildings is a long-term objective.  In the mean time, the University will manage all asbestos hazards based on prioritization and an assessment of risk. Priority for asbestos removal will be assigned as follows:
  • All asbestos-containing materials will be removed prior to any demolition activity which may result in their disturbance.
  • Asbestos-containing materials which have been damaged to the extent that repair measures are not expected to effectively maintain the material in good condition are to be removed.
  • Consideration must be given to the proactive removal of asbestos-containing materials during major renovation projects, or during any major asbestos removal work.


Under the authority of the Asbestos Management Policy:

  • The University will establish an Asbestos Management Program which will outline a comprehensive system to actively manage and stringently control all asbestos-containing materials in University buildings, and all activities which may disturb such materials, including maintenance, alteration, and repair operations.
  • The Program will clearly define and communicate the responsibilities of all workplace parties involved in its development, administration and implementation.
  • In keeping with the University's Health and Safety Policy, individuals who fail to meet their   obligations as outlined in the Program, may, depending on the circumstances, face appropriate discipline or sanctions.
  • The Program may be amended from time to time by University administration in consultation with appropriate union representatives, provided it remains consistent with the Policy.
  • The Vice-President, Human Resources and Equity, will report on asbestos-related issues to the Business Board, pursuant to the Business Board Terms of Reference.

JUNE 2011

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