A campaign by firefighters’ union FBU to reduce the risk of occupational cancer linked to exposure to fire contaminants is having an impact “in every corner of the fire and rescue service”, the union has said.
FBU said it is now pushing hard “to build up the Firefighter Cancer and Disease Registry. The registry is based on a health survey for firefighters, and we need all firefighters– to fill it out.” It added: “With more information in the registry we will be able to get more life-saving research done.”
FBU national officer Riccardo la Torre said: “We need every single firefighter to fill out that registry, whether you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, whether you’ve been diagnosed with a disease or if you’ve never been diagnosed with anything – we need you to fill out that registry now. There is so much more we need to understand about the link between cancer and other diseases and the occupation of firefighting.”
He added: “We cannot protect ourselves from this danger if we don’t properly understand it and we simply cannot do that unless firefighters fill out that registry.” FBU officials have been visiting fire stations to promote awareness of and sign-ups to the cancer and disease registry.
Commenting on the growing reach of the union’s related DECON campaign to reduce firefighter exposures to toxins, la Torre said: “We’re so pleased with how this project has taken off since we launched it live from a fire station. We’ve seen engagement in every corner of the fire and rescue service, we’ve seen posters going up, we’re seeing tweets, we’ve seen people with their babies wearing DECON stickers, and the training is being taken. We’re getting requests for more information and more posters all of the time.”