Firefighters Fighting Cancer is currently included in the proposed Legislative Budget negotiated by both Chambers of the General Assembly. Call your Senate and House Representatives and ask them to vote to pass the final version of the budget this week with this provision. This is a Cancer Insurance Bill that provides benefits for firefighters who contract cancer after January 1, 2022. It is funded out of the General Fund and the Department of Insurance is directed to administer the program. The NC State Firefighters Association included this as our priority Legislative day, with firefighters attending that day wearing NCSFA Logo Masks colored purple in support of Cancer protection. In addition, handouts, materials, and discussions were all directed to this as our priority. Our thanks to Representative’s Saine and Hall for sponsoring, as well as all budget drafters who included this provision.
Continue by contacting Governor Coopers Office after the budget passes both chambers this week and ask him to sign the budget.
During the 2019/2020 the NCSFA worked with the NC League of Municipalities to draft this concept, since Presumptive Cancer for Workers Compensation was a heavy lift to get passed legislatively. This Cancer Insurance Legislation was our best achievable option for passage to provide financial protection for firefighters with cancer. THIS IS NOT A TRADITIONAL PRESUMTIVE CANCER LEGISLATION FOR WORKERS COMPENSATION AS SOME ARE CALLING IT. It is an insurance bill that provides financial protection, and it is funded through 2022 with General Fund Monies. Although initially opposed by some groups pushing Presumptive Cancer for Workers Comp, all fire service organizations came together this year in support of its passage.
In early 2021, the new Fire Service Joint Legislative Committee (NCSFA, NCAFC, PFFPNC) also agreed an insurance cancer bill may be a better option for passage going into the 2021 session and the specifics of the draft bill were reviewed.
We are very close to having this protection passed, which provides a $25,000 benefit upon diagnosis, 75% of salary while out for treatment, an additional $12,000 for expenses, and can be used twice for a maximum benefit of $50,000. Please call your representative.
Once passed the NC Department of Insurance will draft and secure coverage for this policy.