The city of Hinesville has enrolled in the Firefighters Cancer Benefit Program through the Georgia Municipal Association.
The enrollment in the fully insured program, backed by The Hartford, allows the city to be in compliance with House Bill 146, benefit firefighters and be conscious of taxpayers.
“This is a great step that our state and the city of Hinesville have taken in order to support our firefighters and their families,” Hinesville Fire Department Chief Lamar Cook said. “As firefighters, we do everything we can to protect ourselves, like wearing protective gear and respirators to help with breathing, however, contaminants can still seep in through our skin. This insurance program gives our firefighters a small piece of mind.”
A city news release said officials were proud of the addition.
HB 146 requires all legally organized fire departments to provide a lump sum payment to any firefighter diagnosed with certain types of cancer and up to three years of disability payments to firefighters who, because of injury or illness, cannot work as a firefighter.
This new benefit requirement became effective on Jan. 1.