Frequently asked questions

Q: I am interested in volunteering, but do I qualify for the study?

A: FACET is looking for residents of Fort McMurray who allow us to collect house dust samples from their homes. If you live in those areas, you can certainly sign up for the study. To sign up, please fill this form.

Q: What is the time commitment for volunteering?

A: We will visit your community three times between July 2017 and early 2018, and will access your house for about two hours during each visit. We will let you know in advance on the exact dates of each visit. Our first house visits are currently scheduled between July 8th and July 30th.

Q: What will you do at the house visits?

A: During each house visit, we will collect dust samples from your home by vacuuming up dust from the carpets and attics, as well wiping down hard-to-reach surfaces like window sills.

In addition, during our first house visit, we will also ask you to fill out a brief questionnaire with some basic questions regarding your lifestyle (such as your cleaning and smoking habits), and inquire about any clean-up that might have been done to your house by insurance companies or government agencies after the fire.

Q: But what is in it for me?

In addition to taking part in a cutting edge study, each participating household will, upon request, receive a report on the dust samples we have collected from their home. The report will show you the amount of fire-related toxins that may be present in your home and their potential health effects.

Q: How will you protect my privacy?

A: Keeping your personal data confidential is very important for us. We will not use your name or any contact information (such as telephone number or addresses) in our data analysis, nor will we publish any personal information with our study. Instead, your home will be assigned an arbitrary code and all sample analysis and survey results will be linked only to this code. In addition, all personal information will be destroyed at the end of the study.

Q: What if I signed up as a volunteer but don’t want to or can’t continue with the study any more?

A: Volunteers can withdraw from the study at any point. Upon which, we will stop all house visits and immediately destroy all of your personal information. But we might still use and analyse samples collected from earlier house visits and publish the results obtained from those samples.