International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers announces membership in the Canadian Nuclear Isotope Council

IBEW Local 804 commits to helping amplify the importance of Canada continuing to be a leader in the production of medical isotopes

The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), a formidable team of employers and electricians which is a recognized industry leader in delivering safe, stable and high-quality electrical/telecommunications construction and maintenance services, is pleased to announce it has joined the Canadian Nuclear Isotope Council (CNIC) to advocate that Canada remains at the forefront of isotope innovation and supply, and to educate Canadians on the various uses of isotopes from commercial, to industrial, to medical.

“The IBEW is lighting up communities everywhere. With a long history of building and supporting the most iconic structures and events in this province, we are the trusted source for powering your community,” said Mark Watson, Business Manager, IBEW Local 804. “Electricity is the essential ingredient in almost every aspect of modern life. It has to be safe and reliable, now and for the future, but what our people also need to realize is how our existing infrastructure like Ontario’s nuclear fleet can play a critical role in helping Canada reclaim its position as world leader by providing a safe and reliable supply of critical isotopes used in nuclear medicine and beyond.”

In Canada, five nuclear plants across three provinces house 22 reactors. In addition, research reactors spread across the country focus on the production of radioactive substances – known as isotopes – for medical, industrial and scientific uses.

In fact, the field of medical isotopes is continuously evolving. Several new isotopes are gaining prominence in both diagnostic and therapeutic nuclear medicine, but are not currently produced in Canada. At the same time, Canada’s mainstay of isotope production, the National Research Universal reactor, has recently reached the end of its lifespan, threatening future access to some traditional medical isotopes.

“Retaining a secure supply of isotopes and infrastructure in Canada will allow us to maintain a leading position in the development of new nuclear medicine technologies, and to maintain our leadership role we need to continue investing in our isotope industry,” said James Scongack, Chair of the CNIC. “With the rest of the world’s economies looking inward to protect themselves, Canada can maintain its role as a global health leader by taking a broader view.

“The world looks to Canada as a source of health- care innovation and a dependable supply of radioisotopes to diagnose and treat some of the most serious medical conditions. It is here where organizations such as the Canadian Nuclear Isotope Council, with the support of organizations like the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, can serve to protect our country’s status as a frontrunner in nuclear innovation and technology.”

Throughout 2019 the CNIC will remain focused on ensuring that Canada continues to be a world leader in the production of life-saving isotopes by bringing awareness and supporting long-term policies at the domestic and international levels that will save countless lives and support health-care innovation for decades to come.

About IBEW Local 804

The IBEW CCO was established as a result of the Ontario Provincial Government’s legislation institutionalizing province-wide bargaining. Today the IBEW CCO represents 11 IBEW Local Unions across the Province of Ontario serving over 18,000 men and women. The IBEW CCO is actively involved in protecting our membership, enforcing health and safety, and securing our market share through education and awareness. IBEW Local 804 services over 1,400 electricians, apprentices and retirees across the counties of Bruce, Grey, Wellington, Perth, Dufferin and the Region of Waterloo and works in partnership with the Electrical Contractors Association of Central Ontario.

For more information, please contact:
Mark Watson
Business Manager/Financial Secretary
IBEW Local 804
519-648-3993 ext. 203