Supporting our First Responders

June 7, 2019

 

I am pleased to report that the House of Representatives has taken decisive action to provide assistance to police officers, firefighters, and parole officers – who put their lives on the line for our communities every day.

In the performance of their duties these dedicated public servants can experience traumatic and ongoing psychological, emotional and sometimes physical trauma. That’s why we passed SB 164, An Act Including Certain Mental Or Emotional Impairments Within The Definition Of "Personal Injury" Under The Workers' Compensation Statutes.

Under the bill, police officers, firefighters and parole officers may be eligible to receive limited workers’ compensation benefits for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) caused in the line of duty.

This bill, six years in the making, also calls on the General Assembly to review the potential for expanding workers’ compensation PTSD benefits to emergency medical services (EMT) and Department of Correction employees who might not otherwise be eligible.

The legislation passed unanimously in both the House and Senate and I expect it will be signed into law by the Governor.