Fire fighter occupational cancer is the leading cause of line-of-duty death in the fire service.
In 2023, 72% of IAFF member line-of-duty deaths were due to occupational cancer. In Canada, where most provinces and territories have robust presumptive laws, close to 94% of line-of-duty deaths among professional fire fighters are the result of occupational cancers.
In partnership with the Firefighter Cancer Support Network (FCSN), the IAFF has designated January as Fire Fighter Cancer Awareness Month to provide fire fighters the necessary tools and guidance to develop life-saving protocols for cancer prevention and to support those with a cancer diagnosis within their departments.
Canada recognized Fire Fighter Cancer Awareness Month in 2023 with the adoption of MP Sherry Romanado’s Bill C-224.
Bringing increased public awareness to occupational cancer in the fire service will help generate greater legislative support for states and provinces to establish presumptive disabilities for all cancers affecting fire fighters.