A top IAFF legislative priority, the Firefighter Cancer Registry Act of 2017 (H.R. 931), cleared its final hurdle in the U.S. House of Representatives this week, passing by a unanimous vote. The bill, introduced by Representatives Chris Collins (R-NY) and Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), is intended to assist in growing the body of evidence linking cancer and the occupation of fire fighting.
“Today, most fire fighters who die in the line of duty are not killed by smoke or fire, but rather by the hidden scourge of cancer” said General President Harold Schaitberger in a statement. “Carcinogens made deadlier by heat and fire threaten fire fighters at nearly every call, and have inordinately impacted our nation’s heroes. The studies that will be conducted because of this legislation will go far to assist us in our quest to understand cancer within the fire service better and take appropriate preventive measures.”
Schaitberger applauded the House of Representatives for taking up this bill during a period with so many other pressing matters.
The IAFF’s focus now shifts to the U.S. Senate where the legislation has gained wide bipartisan support.