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WASHINGTON D.C. - Minnesota Senator Klobuchar hosted a virtual press conference about the "Honoring Our Fallen Heroes Act" Wednesday morning.
The proposed bill is aimed to expand federal support for firefighters who became permanently and totally disabled from cancer they incurred on the job. The legislation would provide similar benefits as the Public Safety Officer Benefits (PSOB) program does for it's first responders. Senator Klobuchar and Cramer of North Dakota are both working together on the bill.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reported firefighters are exposed to hundreds of cancer-causing chemicals and cancer is the leading cause of death for firefighters.
"It is only right that we treat cancer caused by on the job exposure . . . the same way we treat other physical injuries. We know very well both Senator Kramer and I, from visiting fire fighters across our state, have seen this happen in number of fire departments," said Klobuchar.
The bill is in honor of a St. Paul Fire Captain, Michael Paidar, who died three years ago of cancer he obtained from being on the line of duty.
"We should certainly be doing right by those families that suffer the loss of a love one because of the sacrifices they have made," said President of International Association of Fire Fighters General President, Edward Kelly.