US news

Dems propose expansion of benefit program for public safety officers killed or disabled by coronavirus

House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler is proposing to expand a federal program to provide benefits to police, firefighters and other public safety officers who are permanently disabled by coronavirus — or death benefits to their families if they die from complications connected to the virus.

The New York Democrat’s bill, introduced Tuesday with Reps. Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.) and Max Rose (D-N.Y.), would expand a federal program that provides similar death or disability benefits to officers fallen or injured in the line of duty to include those public safety officials on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis.

“During this time of crisis, as the COVID-19 pandemic rages on, public safety officers remain on call 24-7, which puts them at serious risk for exposure,” Nadler said in a statement, adding, “As Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, I will do everything in my power to ensure this becomes law.”

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