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Glove Up! Use personal protective equipment

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From Glove Up! Protect yourselves and others while working with solvents

Below are a number of articles, published papers and video recordings containing information that you may find interesting. Thanks Tony Gibson and each publication for approval to include these articles.



Thanks to

These Glove Up web resources have been made available with permission from, and many thanks to, Annette and Tony Gibson. Both Annette and Tony have worked tirelessly for many years to help provide education and resources to encourage painters to use appropriate personal protective equipment to keep themselves safe.

Annette and Tony would like to give thanks for the support of:

  • Barry and Helen O’Brien
  • Collision Repair Association
  • Decorative Supplies
  • Halswell Timber
  • Lynn River
  • Master Painters NZ
  • Nellies Bar & Grill, Mosgiel
  • Resene paints
  • Signs Display
  • Trevor and Lyn Bills 

In memory of Jason

In loving memory of Jason Gibson
In loving memory
Jason Gibson
1974 – 2003

From Tony Gibson – (Jason’s father)

The Wednesday before Jason passed away, he came to my home and complained of hay fever like symptoms. The night prior he ran to the top of the summit road and back where he told me he had a nosebleed. I said to him at the time maybe he should go and get a lead test (as he was a painter) as he had been doing some lead paint removal. The next day he went to the doctor and had a blood test taken. The following day, Friday at 4pm in the afternoon, he received a phone call from his doctor stating he should go to the hospital immediately as he had blood cancer.

The following Wednesday morning Jason passed away, 6 days after being diagnosed with Leukaemia. He suffered 5 massive brain haemorrhages. As you can imagine we were shocked as we had been told prior to his death he had an 85% chance of recovery.

Since then I have made it my mission to find the reasons behind my son’s death. This is one of the reasons for this website resource.

In relating back to an incident where he had been working for an industrial painter a short time prior to his death:

Jason had pulled up at my home to collect his daughter. As he opened the door to his van he fell on the ground. I asked him, “Had he been drinking?”. He said, “No, I have been spraying the inside of brewery tanks with two pot paints”. He was some 25 feet away from me at that particular time and I could smell the toxins. I said he should not have his daughter in the van with him. I then went to the vehicle, looked in it and the vehicle was empty. The stench of solvents was coming from him through his pores as he perspired and not the van as I had thought.

Unbeknown to me at the time, I was to pass this vital information to OSH after the death of my son.

Since then I have realised the extent of the risk we take when using solvents – not just in the painting industry but all industries that use solvents. However, it is important to note that in 1989 the Cancer Research Association classified the whole of the painting industry as a category 1 carcinogen. Unfortunately for my boy this information was not passed on to the polytechnics when he was trained.

The statistics today show 1000 people die of emissions every year in New Zealand and a further 1700 people die every year from work related diseases. This, on average, means 50 people every week are dying UNNECESSARILY. With the proper education I feel this number can reduce dramatically – AWARENESS is the key.

Just some of the important facts to me are:

  • 4 years ago, when my son died, 1 in 3 New Zealanders were affected by cancer. Today’s statistics are now 1 in 3 are dying of Cancer. CANCER is New Zealand’s biggest KILLER!

  • Acute Promyelocytic Leukaemia is a particular pattern of chromosomal damage proven to be caused by solvents – Toluene and Xylene to name two.

  • Skin Contact – Solvents can be detected in the body within 30 seconds of skin contact.

Hence our Glove Up Campaign. I believe the most important solutions are to be able to identify your hazards – i.e. Solvents (e.g. Benzene), Herbicides, etc and by correct labelling and Carcinogen Ratings.

Jason’s case is perhaps similar, or not, to yours. This is why the information in this website is not only directed at painters and their industry but to everyone. Upon reading the statistics and all the information we have on this site you may be able to relate it to your situation and hopefully have some further education or knowledge on how to protect yourself and your loved ones from exposure. My wife and I want to help, and to educate others so if there are others you can share the information on this site with, please do.

This introduction has been compiled by Leeanna (Jason’s sister) and Tony (Jason’s father).


Glove Up! Project yourselves and others while working with solvents

These web resources have been created by Annette and Tony Gibson to provide basic information on the dangers of using solvents in the workplace and how to protect yourself from exposure. The information is provided as a guideline only and not as a replacement for professional advice. If you have any questions, thoughts or comments you'd like to share with us please email us at

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