The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) is joining the Firefighter Cancer Support Network (FCSN) and International Association of Fire Fighters in recognising January as Firefighter Cancer Awareness Month. Chances are someone in the department or a firefighter who has battled cancer. This is a very prevalent and serious issue facing the fire service.
The good news is that there are actions taken to lessen the risks and prevent future tragedies so members don’t lose more firefighters to this illness. Use this month to take stock of what the crew can do to limit exposures and minimise risk factors.
Ways to minimise risk
Following are resources to help:
- Firefighter Cancer Awareness Month Website: FCSN has created a website with resources, training briefs, PowerPoints, infographics, and more to help departments educate their members.
- Lavender Ribbon Report Update: The NVFC and IAFC Volunteer and Combination Officers Section recently released a new supplement to the Lavender Ribbon Report to further motivate firefighters to take the 11 actions to reduce their occupational cancer risks.
- Surviving the Job – Preventing Firefighter Cancer: This NVFC course explains how to incorporate 11 best practices from the Lavender Ribbon Report into the daily routines to reduce exposure risk and protect members and fellow firefighters from occupational cancer. This course is available for free to all in January.
- Actions to Reduce Firefighter Cancer Risks: Join the NVFC and subject matter experts for a live discussion on how to reduce firefighter cancer risks on January 18, 2022, at 3 pm ET on Facebook or Zoom.
- Cancer Prevention Webinars: The NVFC has hosted several webinars addressing firefighter cancer. The recordings are available on-demand in the NVFC Virtual Classroom.
- Cancer Awareness & Prevention: Firehouse released a supplement in December on the topic of firefighter cancer. Also, check out the 2020 supplement for more from the volunteer perspective.
- Additional Resources: The NVFC has created a compendium of resources to help firefighters learn about and address firefighter cancer.