Workers' compensation guidelines for firefighters now include two reproductive cancers faced by women.

Firefighters who contract ovarian and cervical cancer will receive workers' compensation benefits and supports with the minimum exposure period for these cancers being 10 years.

According to the Government, approximately eight per cent of Alberta firefighters are women.

Ken Thevenot, Fire Chief of the Okotoks Fire Department, says it's great the focus now includes cancers that specifically impact women in service.

"I'm happy the research was done for not only male but female firefighters. We have one female firefighter on our team and we have to make sure that all the firefighters are taken care of so it's been good the research has been done and this has been added."

The government has also reduced the minimum exposure period for compensation for testicular cancer from 20 to 10 years and the expiry dates of the regulations have also been removed.

Thevenot says he's thankful the government, Firefighters Association, and Chiefs Association worked on this.

"I think with that research done these changes have all been a good addition to the number of cancers firefighters do or potentially could come across in their careers. They're at higher rates of cancer than the average person."

The Firefighters' Primary Site Cancer Regulation was created in 2003 and is part of the Workers' Compensation Act.

Section 24.1 of the Workers' Compensation Act states that if a firefighter suffers from a primary site cancer of a type specified in the regulation, that cancer shall be presumed to be an occupational disease, and therefore eligible for Workers’ Compensation Board benefits.

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