Bill would extend cancer coverage to volunteer firefighters

Aug 13, 2017

Governor Andrew Cuomo is getting pressure from lawmakers and volunteer firefighters to sign legislation providing better coverage for illnesses often associated with firefighting.

Statistics show that firefighters have an increased likelihood of cancer because of exposure to chemicals, smoke and toxins while battling a blaze.

Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi

Democratic State Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi from Utica says volunteers need the help.

"The fact is that cancer is very real in the fire service. It’s becoming more prevalent," Brindisi said. "And it’s time that the state stepped up and do the right thing, because our volunteers are there for us in our most needed time, and we need to be there for them in a time of uncertainty."

Right now only professional volunteers are afforded extra coverage.

The legislation passed the State Senate and Assembly and will be sent to the governor’s desk by the end of the year.