Radon Awareness: The Power of Working Together
In the spirit of “Working Together,” how can we best support organizations and individuals working to raise radon awareness? As associations that unite professionals with a common interest, both CRPA and the Canadian Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (CARST) know that we’ll get further by forging partnerships, playing to our strengths, and—when it comes to awareness—not giving up! It takes consistent effort over time to see results.
Recently, CARST has been focusing our radon awareness efforts on the workplace. A recent article in the CRPA Bulletin aimed at CRPA professionals (Radon in the Workplace – Are You Protected?) asked how many of you knew the status of your own workplaces ; despite your radiation expertise, are you working in a high radon environment and being exposed to unnecessary radiation? This is a question that should be on the minds of those responsible for workplaces across Canada.
Recently, Health Canada published a series of Radon Action Guides  for both provinces and municipalities. CARST lost no time in sending letters to each of the provincial and territorial ministers of labour to draw their attention to how they might better protect workers and ask whether they’ve taken the simple first steps of measuring for radon in provincially owned workplaces. The Radon Action Guides identify numerous places where provinces can take advantage of existing policies and guidelines to protect workers from radon, but it will take consistent effort on the part of many radon stakeholders to enact change at the provincial level.
Of course, the danger posed by radon isn’t limited to workplaces. Every home needs to be tested for radon, no matter the type of home or the prevalence of radon in the region. Community testing programs across the country are routinely proving that more radon testing is needed.
Take Action on Radon is a national initiative, funded by Health Canada, to bring together radon stakeholders and raise awareness about radon across Canada. Their 100 Radon Test Kit Challenge  has now tested almost 100 communities, and the reports show that radon in many areas is more prevalent than initial estimates presumed. Thanks to the ongoing efforts of stakeholders across the country, a growing number of communities are now taking radon awareness into their own hands and adding radon information to their websites or distributing free radon test kits every fall. 
This April, CRPA presented a continuing education course for radon professionals at CARST’s 12th annual radon conference that took a deeper dive into radiation. CARST is looking forward to presenting at CRPA’s conference this May to talk about the work we’ve been doing, specifically the lessons learned and data gleaned from Take Action on Radon’s 100 Radon Test Kit Challenge. Maintaining a dialogue between CRPA and CARST and lending our complementary expertise to groups across the country, is truly the best way to support not only radon awareness, but our members as well.
 In October 2022, Health Canada published a series of radon action guides:
- Radon Action Guide for Municipalities
- Radon Action Guide for Provinces and Territories
- Radon action in Municipal Law
- Justifications and Policy Rationales for Radon Action
The guides were produced to help municipalities, provinces, and territories develop programs and policies to address radon. They describe broader radon planning and strategy development, and include appendices with examples and specific guidance to help formulate policy and regulatory change.
 The Take Action on Radon: 100 Radon Test Kit Challenge targets municipalities across Canada where radon testing has thus far been limited, but where there is a potential for homes to have elevated radon levels. The program will provide up to 100 test kits to each participating municipality, to be distributed to citizens for free.
 November is Radon Action Month.
Erin is a mechanical engineer who previously ran her own building inspection and radon measurement firm. She is currently the regional director of the Canadian Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (CARST). She also serves as project lead for the Take Action on Radon project. Erin brings a wealth of knowledge and practical experience to support CARST members. Based near Montreal, QC, Erin is the French-speaking contact for all CARST initiatives.
See related articles:
Radon in the Workplace – Are You Protected?, October 11, 2022.
Annual Dose Contributions of Typical Indoor Radon Levels (Part 1), December 9, 2020
Annual Dose Contributions of Typical Indoor Radon Levels (Part 2), October 26, 2021
Radon Action Month: Awareness Through Education, December 9, 2020
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Canada’s nuclear regulator was unfortunately developed by imperial British Supremacists, with a pernicious Supremacist attitude, which foolishly dismissed and excluded other, home-grown [Canadian] sources of radiation protection, which were and are in fact superior to British ideas. Consequently, Canada’s nuclear regulator created huge gaps in the national protection program which continue to put Canadians at risk, needlessly. Those potentially harmful gaps had to be filled in by Canadian RP professionals [CRPA], who are doing a much better job of protecting Canadians against nuclear risks. Canadian RP professionals may be the best in the world, and it’s a national shame that the Health Physics Masters Program at McMaster was allowed to go down. The primitive British authoritarian approach to nuclear regulation is backward, and self limiting, because it does not respect nor value advanced local experience, knowledge, and wisdom. The great difference is found in the level of caring….Canadians RP professionals genuinely care about our workers, the public, and the environment, while British Supremacists are all about dominance, ie: control over, or dominating others with with their toxic social delusions of political Supremacy.