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Mesothelioma News

New Orleans Council Member Accuses 36 Defendants of Role in His Mesothelioma

After working in and serving Jefferson Parish in New Orleans for decades, Jimmy Lawson never dreamed that his dedication would lead to him being diagnosed with the rare and fatal form of cancer known as malignant mesothelioma. But that is exactly what happened, and now the well known council member is pursuing justice, pursuing a legal battle against the local government, the Jefferson School Board, and almost three dozen companies and organizations that he is accusing of having exposed him to the asbestos that caused his illness.

Lawson is 71 years old, and was diagnosed less than a year ago with mesothelioma, the condition caused by exposure to asbestos. In reviewing his working career and life to determine the source of his personal exposure, he found “a number of different sources … throughout the greater New Orleans area” that were contaminated with the carcinogenic material. As a result, his mesothelioma lawsuit names companies ranging from the owner of the Avondale Shipyard where he worked in the late 1960s to the local government, where he served on the Jefferson Parish Council for 19 years. While serving as a member of the Jefferson Finance Authority and the Housing Authority (including time spent as the chairman of that group), he worked in government offices throughout the city, all of which were build using asbestos.

Asbestos was used in equipment, industrial settings and construction up until the mid-1970s, when its carcinogenic nature was made known by the Environmental Protection Agency. Prior to the public release of that information, many asbestos companies were aware of its dangers but kept the information a secret from the public and their customers. As a result, tens of thousands of people were exposed to the material and not given the ability to protect themselves from inhaling or ingesting it. Since that time, those companies have been held legally responsible for the damage that people have suffered.

If you were exposed to asbestos and have been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, asbestosis or any other asbestos-related disease, you may be able to pursue legal action against the companies responsible, just as Jimmy Lawson is doing in New Orleans. For more information, contact us today at 1-800-966-2244.