Europe’s firefighters discuss work cancer response

The UK Fire Brigades Union’s pioneering DECON project has been showcased at a meeting of the European Public Service Union (EPSU) Firefighters’ Network.

Riccardo la Torre, FBU national officer, said: “DECON is here to stay in the UK fire and rescue service. It’s got the entire sector speaking about the risk posed, and now firefighters from across Europe are keen to learn from each other.”

He added: “This meeting was also a huge opportunity for us to listen and discuss these issues, and we look forward to getting back to the UK and working with fire and rescue services to make progress on DECON and saving firefighters from early, needless deaths.

“Neither the bosses or the government have done this domestically, it’s been down to FBU members and the Firefighters 100 Lottery to carry out this life-saving work.”

Two discussion sessions took place, both focused on “Cancer as a professional disease for firefighters, impact of fire effluents and decontamination”.

The FBU is also calling for preventive health screening for firefighters and presumptive legislation recognising cancer as an occupational disease, to help protect firefighters and their families further from this occupational hazard.


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