NSW Labor will slash red tape for firefighters seeking compensation following a cancer diagnosis, to put an end to them having to go to excessive lengths to prove a direct cause of the disease.
Member for Newcastle, Tim Crakanthorp today joined his colleague Member for Charlestown, Jodie Harrison and Fire Brigades Union Sub Branch Secretary, Jason Morgan at Cooks Hill Fire Station to discuss this pressing issue.
NSW is one of the last states to introduce appropriate legislation to eliminate red tape for firefighters seeking compensation following a Commonwealth Bill which was passed in 2011.
The legislation is being strongly supported by the Fire Brigade Employees Union and the Rural Fire Services Association who have been campaigning on the importance of presumptive cancer legislation for firefighters and volunteer firefighters being enacted in NSW.
Numerous studies have conclusively proven that firefighters are at much greater risk of developing certain cancers as a result of being exposed to hazardous substances due to the nature of their job.
A firefighter diagnosed with one or more of the 12 listed cancers would automatically have their disease presumed to be caused by occupational hazards while firefighting, if they meet the minimum service period according to the table below.
The Bill forms part of NSW Labor’s 2019 Emergency Services Plan.
Quotes attributable to Member for Newcastle Tim Crakanthorp
“Firefighters regularly put their lives on the line to protect our communities from harm. It's our duty to ensure we afford them the appropriate protections in return."
“This legislation is intended to protect and assist firefighters during the tumultuous times which follow the diagnosis of cancer. NSW Labor is committed to providing our firefighters with the reassurance that they will be looked after. That is why this legislation is vitally important."
Quotes attributable to Member for Charlestown Jodie Harrison
“It is a fact that exposure to hazardous chemicals causes cancer.”
“This Bill will make it easier for firefighters to access the compensation they deserve if they are diagnosed with cancer.”
“I, along with my Labor colleagues, stand in solidarity with the Fire Brigade Employees Union to fight for peace of mind for our firefighters.”