The recent series of Victorian bushfires has seen renewed pleas for the Victorian State Government to review the WorkCover scheme to injured / ill firefighters in order to decrease “the burden of proof” related to various cancers caused during their employment.
Victorian Firefighters fight for increase in workcover protection
It is widely known that firefighters are at a significant risk of contracting certain types of cancer as a result of exposure to various chemicals whilst performing their job.
Sid you know that several other states, such as SA, Tas, and WA have long introduced workcover legislation to decrease the burden of proof for injured firefighters battling particular types of cancer. Likewise, similar laws are also in place at a federal level, where particular types of cancer are simply (and rightly)“deemed” to be connected to a firefighter’s duties. However, to date, no such workcover legislation exists to protect our Victorian firefighters.
Victorian firefighters currently have to prove that their injury/illness has been caused by their employment – which means they are subjected to the same legislative requirements as other, regular injured/ill workers. Needless to mention that workcover routinely denies a certain type of cancer was caused at work.
The United Firefighters Union has recently repeated the need for Victorian laws to reflect the same protections for injured/ill firefighters in other jurisdictions/states.