Firefighter Wins Workers’ Comp for Breast Cancer

Saturday, January 08, 2011
Thirteen years after she was first diagnosed with breast cancer, Las Vegas firefighter Robin Lawson is finally set to receive workers’ compensation coverage for her condition, after the state Supreme Court agreed she became ill as a result of her duties.
Lawson was told she had breast cancer in 1997, after five years on the job. Her oncologist advised her to stop working, believing that fire-fighting was the cause of her cancer. Later, it was found that Lawson had been exposed to toxic benzene and other carcinogens while on the job.
She filed a workers’ comp claim, but was denied twice by the city’s insurance program. She took the matter to court, where it eventually reached the Nevada Supreme Court.
Lawson has undergone at least two surgeries; first, a lumpectomy, then a double mastectomy in 2005 when the cancer returned.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
City Must Pay Benefits to Firefighter with Cancer (by Jeff Gorman, Courthouse News Service)
City of Las Vegas v. Robin Lawson (Nevada Supreme Court) (pdf)


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