Senate Committee Unanimously Passes Fire Fighter Cancer Registry Act
The Firefighter Cancer Registry Act of 2017 (S. 382) is closer to becoming law following a favorable vote at a hearing to consider the legislation by the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.
Introduced by Senators Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), the bill establishes the first national cancer registry specifically for fire fighters.
Housed within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the cancer registry will collect detailed data on the occurrences of cancer by fire fighters to assist scientists with the specialized information they need for research activities. This research will help strengthen our understanding of the link between firefighting and cancer and could potentially lead to better prevention and safety protocols.
Before the unanimous vote on the bill, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), the ranking member of the committee, recognized the heroic work carried out by fire fighters as she spoke in support of the Firefighter Cancer Registry Act.
"I offer a thank you to Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) for holding this markup on the Firefighter Cancer Registry Act,” says General President Harold Schaitberger.
“Today’s unanimous vote moves this legislation a step closer to the president’s desk and is a testament to the need for a greater understanding of cancer within the fire service. The vote also demonstrates our ability to work in a bipartisan manner on Capitol Hill as we further the interests of fire fighters. I commend Senators Menendez and Murkowski for their leadership on this important legislation, and I look forward to its final passage in the 115th Congress.”
The IAFF will continue to work on this legislation, and anticipates a vote on the bill in the full U.S. Senate in the near future.