Protecting America’s First Responders Act Introduced in Congress

The Protecting America’s First Responders Act (H.R. 2936/S. 1511) was introduced last month by Representative Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) and Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), respectively. The bill makes a number of positive changes to the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits (PSOB) program, including clarifying that members of volunteer fire departments who perform scene security and traffic management duties at emergency scenes are public safety officers, making it easier for public safety officers to qualify for the PSOB Disability program, and improving the process by which PSOB claims are paid to the survivors of public safety officers who died of occupational illness related to work at Ground Zero after 9/11.

“I’d like to thank Representative Pascrell, Senator Grassley, and all of the bi-partisan cosponsors of the Protecting America’s First Responders Act for introducing this important bill,” said National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) chair Steve Hirsch. “I am particularly pleased that this bill would finally clarify that fire police officers, who perform traffic incident management duties as members of volunteer fire departments, are public safety officers.”

Use the NVFC’s Legislative Action Center to contact your U.S. Representative and Senators to ask them to cosponsor the Protecting America’s First Responders Act!