Most of what is known about cancer in firefighters comes from studies in men. Very little is known about cancer risks in women. In 2012, concerns about breast cancer rates among women firefighters in San Francisco were raised and Board member Anita Paratley brought it to the San Francisco Firefighter Cancer Prevention Foundation’s attention. In response, SFFCPF conducted a survey that confirmed there was a problem. SFFCPF then held a meeting at the office of City and County Health Service and invited researchers from various organizations (U.C. Berkely, UCSF, Commonweal, Silent Spring, California Breast Cancer Research Program) to discuss the issue and find a solution.

As a result of this meeting, Silent Spring joined forces with scientists at University of California, Berkeley, San Francisco firefighters, and health advocates to form the Women Firefighters Biomonitoring Collaborative. Rachel Morello-Frosch, PhD, also submitted a grant proposal to BCRF that was accepted. SFFCPF is proud to be a major supporter of the study and to help fund it.