Premier Weatherill Please Support Volunteer Firefighters Too
Did you know that firefighters have five times the rate of cancer as the general population and studies consistently show that they are at significantly greater risk of certain cancers because of their exposure to toxic smoke and chemicals through the course of their duties?
In working to save the lives and livelihoods of people across Australia, paid MFS firefighters and Country Fire Service volunteers fight fires to keep us safe. Now it’s our turn to protect them, but we need your help!
In November 2011 Adam Bandt, Greens MP for Melbourne’s Fair Protection for Firefighters bill recognising the causal link between fire-fighting and certain cancers passed through the Federal Parliament and became law.
Since then the Greens have championed the cause at state level - approaching then Ministers Snelling and Wortley to seek their support for similar protections to apply in SA.
Last year the SA State Government moved, announcing plans forpaid firefighters to receive automatic WorkCover compensation and assistance should they contract one of 12 specified work-related cancers. While this is an important first step in the right direction, this legislation would leave the State’s 13,500 Country Fire Service (CFS) volunteers lacking in protection should they contract a work-related cancer.
Volunteer firefighters fight the same types of fires as their paid comrades, often shoulder to shoulder and have long been treated as 'workers' under the relevant Act. They put their lives on the line every time they front up to fight a fire. Now it’s time the community showed them we value and respect their dedication, bravery and hard work.
The Greens’ Workers, Rehabilitation and Compensation (Protection for Firefighters) Amendment Bill 2012 will ensure WorkCover compensation and rehabilitation will be available to ALL firefighters who contract a specified work related cancer.
Carcinogens don’t discriminate, so why does the Weatherill Government?
Please sign and share this petition urging the government to protect both paid and volunteer firefighters!
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