Orange safety cones are about as commonplace as the reliable power Tampa Electric provides to the communities it serves. We even have some miniature magnetic versions that team members place on the hood or roof of our trucks to remind them to walk the “circle of safety” – a basic safety check of their vehicles before getting behind the wheel – and about our commitment to safety and health above all other considerations.
Sadly, cancer is commonplace too – and for October, Breast Cancer Awareness Month, our Substation and Meter Services team has switched their orange cones to pink ones as a way to help raise awareness of the ongoing fight against the disease.
“Many of us have loved ones who have been impacted by breast cancer specifically or cancer in other forms,” said Gordon Hudson, lead supervisor with Field Operations. “For us, raising awareness felt important because of direct connections to this issue within our team and, in a larger sense, because the men and women of TECO are your neighbors – we’re part of this community just like our customers.”
He added, “We all have a stake in the discovery of a cure. Until then, we’re thinking about everyone who’s involved in this fight. That’s what the cones help with – keeping the reality of breast cancer in mind helps maintain the urgency as it relates to not just a cure, but prevention.”
To that end, the National Breast Cancer Foundation has a locator tool to help you find a facility that performs mammograms in your area. And there’s more information about education, research and more. The American Cancer Society also has a wealth of information about the cancer that affects more women in the United States than any other after skin cancer.
The bottom line, said Hudson, comes down to awareness and action.
“Just as people know they always have to wear their seatbelts to stay safe on the road with the dangers that are out there, we also have to take steps in recognition of things like breast cancer that are out there,” he said. “If raising awareness helps just one woman discovers cancer while it’s still easily treatable, the effort is more than worth it.”