R 010
2023 -- H 5024
Enacted 01/10/2023

H O U S E   R E S O L U T I O N

Introduced By: Representatives Azzinaro, Shekarchi, Casey, Blazejewski, Chippendale, Noret, Shanley, Craven, Solomon, and Serpa

Date Introduced: January 10, 2023

     WHEREAS, Tragically, occupational cancer has surpassed heart disease as the leading
line-of-duty cause of death among firefighters. From 2015 to 2020, nearly 75 percent of the
firefighters added to the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) National Fallen Fire
Fighters Memorial died from occupational cancer; and
     WHEREAS, In response to this growing problem, the IAFF and the Firefighter Support
Network are teaming up and combining resources to tackle this growing problem and are working
tirelessly and striving daily to reduce the impact of cancer on firefighters through better education
and prevention resources within fire departments across the nation and with a particular focus on
early detection; and
     WHEREAS, According to the Firefighter Cancer Support Network, firefighters have a
nine percent higher risk of being diagnosed with cancer and a fourteen percent higher risk of
dying from cancer than the general United States population citing research conducted by the
CDC/National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety (NIOSH). The cancers most
responsible for this higher risk are respiratory (lung and mesothelioma), GI (oral cavity,
esophageal, large intestine) and kidney; and
     WHEREAS, Overall, firefighters have a greater risk of getting certain cancers than the
general public with testicular cancer being 2.02 times higher, mesothelioma being 2 times higher,
multiple myeloma 1.53 times higher, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma being 1.51 times higher, skin
cancer being 1.39 times higher, malignant melanoma being 1.31 times higher, brain cancer being
1.31 times higher, prostate cancer being 1.28 times higher, colon cancer being 1.21 times higher,
and leukemia being 1.14 times higher; and
     WHEREAS, America and Rhode Island's firefighters are dedicated public safety
professionals who often risk life and limb to protect people's lives and property. They deserve our
support and the resources necessary to do everything possible to reduce their greater chances of
being diagnosed with and perishing from cancer; now, therefore be it
     RESOLVED, That this House of Representatives of the State of Rhode Island hereby
proclaims January of 2023, to be "Firefighter Cancer Awareness Month" in the State of Rhode
Island; and be it further
     RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and hereby is authorized and directed to
transmit a duly certified copy of this resolution to the International Association of Fire Fighters