Burbank, California – The Firefighter Cancer Support Network (FCSN) announced it is providing cancer-prevention training for Indianapolis Fire Department (IFD) instructors and other Indiana fire instructors from July 11-15, 2016. The repeating course runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.
Cancer is the leading cause of firefighter line-of-duty deaths in the United States. Cancer caused 60 percent of line-of-duty deaths for career firefighters between 2002-2014, according to International Association
of Fire Fighters data. Since 2005, FCSN has provided assistance and one-on-one mentoring to thousands of cancer-stricken firefighters and their families. FCSN also delivers extensive firefighter cancer awareness and prevention training nationwide.
“Last year, IFD implemented FCSN’s 11 recommended actions to reduce firefighters’ cancer risks,” said IFD Chief Ernest Malone. “We are pleased to host FCSN’s cancer-prevention training as part of our ongoing effort to reduce cancer in the fire service.”
FCSN collaborated with Malone and leaders of IAFF Local 416 to bring its cancer-prevention training to Indianapolis. FCSN President Bryan Frieders, a division chief with Verdugo (CA) Fire Rescue, praised Indianapolis’s ongoing, collaborative approach to reducing firefighters’ occupational cancer risk. “Addressing the occupational-cancer epidemic requires a cultural change for the fire service,” Frieders said. “Ernie Malone and Mike Reeves are demonstrating leadership on this crucial challenge. Their work together with FCSN illustrates how effective labor-management relationships can be to enhance the safety and well-being of firefighters.”
FCSN has delivered its occupational-cancer awareness and prevention training to thousands of firefighters across America. FCSN’s new train-the-trainer program helps ensure consistent, accurate education about cancer in the fire service delivered with highly personal interaction by fellow firefighters and other qualified instructors. Topics covered each day during the train-the-trainer program include:
• Cancer is the top cause of firefighter line-of-duty deaths;
• The most common cancers firefighters face;
• Immediate actions firefighters can take to reduce their occupational-cancer risk;
• Cancer-prevention roles for the company officer, battalion chief, and fire chief;
• How governing jurisdictions can reduce occupational-cancer risk;
• Why personal-exposure records are vital; and
• How the nonprofit Firefighter Cancer Support Network helps firefighters cope with cancer.
Keith Tyson, who retired after 34 years of service with Miami-Dade Fire Rescue, and Russell Osgood, a firefighter with the Portsmouth (NH) Fire Department, are FCSN’s instructors for the Indianapolis train-the-trainer event. Battalion Chief Douglas Abernathy and Battalion Chief Rita Reith coordinated the event for IFD with assistance from John M. Buckman III, fire training director for the Indiana state fire marshal’s office.
IFD Capt. Tim McDonnell, a cancer survivor, is FCSN’s longtime representative for Indiana. He facilitated fundraising efforts on behalf of IFD Firefighter Joel Johnston during FCSN’s Comedy vs. Cancer at FDIC event in April 2015. Johnston, 45, succumbed to cancer in October 2015.
FCSN is delivering the Indianapolis train-the-trainer program with support from the Scott Safety Foundation. Please direct inquiries about FCSN’s cancer-prevention training and new train-the-trainer program to Tim Elliott at [email protected].
FCSN was founded in 2005 by Los Angeles County Firefighter/Paramedic Michael Dubron, a survivor of stage IV colon cancer. Today, FCSN provides timely assistance and one-on-one peer support to fire/EMS members and their families after a cancer diagnosis. FCSN also delivers firefighter cancer awareness and prevention programs nationwide. FCSN is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. For more details, please visit firefightercancersupport.org.