Local Firefighter Union Gives Back to Support Lung Health in Miami

Local 1403 named Presenting Sponsor of the Lung Association’s Fight For Air Climb event
Today, the American Lung Association in Florida announced that International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) Metro-Dade Firefighters Local 1403 is the Presenting Sponsor of the Fight For Air Climb, set for March 4 at loanDepot Park, Home of the Miami Marlins. This is the 19th year that the local firefighter union has sponsored the event.

The Fight For Air Climb is the premier stair climbing event in South Florida and will include hundreds of participants, including more than 200 firefighters, many in full gear, climbing 1,700 stairs at loanDepot park, Home of the Miami Marlins.

“Many community members see us solely through the lens of ‘doing our job’, but that leaves out a big part of who we are,” shares Jason Suite, Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Firefighter and Charities Ambassador for the Fight For Air Climb. “We want our residents to see our help extends beyond receiving a phone call and that we’re a vital part of the community. We support our residents all the time. Our participation in the Climb, is just one example. We love to come back year after and reconnect with other climbers.”

To further reaffirm Local 1403’s continued support of the Fight For Air Climb, William McAllister, Metro-Dade Firefighters IAFF Local 1403 Union President shares “In the line of duty, firefighters are regularly exposed to smoke, gasses, chemicals and other substances that can be damaging to their lungs, making them at an increased risk for chronic issues, including lingering cough, hoarseness, asthma, and allergies, and in more extreme cases, lung or bronchial cancer, so the work of the American Lung Association is critical to us.”

“Similar to the Lung Association, lung health and safety continues to be our priority,” shares McAllister. “To help decrease exposure to hazardous chemicals and carcinogens for our firefighters, we have implemented a two-gear system. Every Miami-Dade firefighter has their gear cleaned after exposure and a new decontaminated one is available when needed. We are so proud that this innovative program is being nationally recognized given its direct impact to the health and safety of our firefighters.”

“Besides firefighters, the Lung Association’s work to support clean air and healthy lungs affects everyone, so we are proud to be involved with the Fight For Air Climb again this year,” shares McAllister. We hope to see our community come together for a fun and inspiring event.”

“Through events like the Fight For Air Climb, we are able to fund our work to improve air quality, educate residents on lung health and help people who live with lung disease,” said Chrissy Cohen, executive director for the Lung Association. “But we can’t do it alone. Our partnership with Local 1403 helps us provide vital support to the Miami community and residents throughout Florida. From funding asthma education, to providing resources to those suffering from lung cancer, this support makes people’s lives better every day.”

The Miami-Dade Fire Rescue team spearheaded by Metro-Dade Local 1403, has raised more than $187,000 for the Lung Association over 19 years participating in the event.

Registration for the Fight For Air Climb is $35 and includes a $100 fundraising minimum. For more information, and to register, visit FightForAirClimb.org/Miami.
For more information, contact:

Jill Smith
704-818-4138
[email protected]

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