The coronavirus pandemic has brought a healthcare and economic crisis to doorsteps across the country, including throughout the New York metro area. At the front of the fight are first responders who put their own personal safety at risk to assist and protect their community. Legislation recently passed by the U.S. House of Representatives would ensure that public safety officers that have been infected with Covid-19 get certain benefits.
The Public Safety Officer Pandemic Response Act would provide benefits to public safety officers – and their families – who become disabled or die as a result of Covid-19. The legislation, if signed into law, would also ensure that first responders to the September 11th attacks who get Covid-19 are also eligible for benefits. Those responders often develop a wide range of respiratory issues that put them at a significantly higher risk if they are infected with the coronavirus.
“In seeking to protect and serve their communities in their various roles, public safety officers willingly undertake risks of harm on a daily basis,” Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) said on the House floor, shortly before lawmakers voted to pass the legislation. “During the current crisis of COVID-19 contagion, the risks to public safety officers go well beyond the dangers first responders ordinarily experience.”
Nadler and Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) among the bill’s sponsors in the House, along with more than 20 Democrats. The legislation now moves to the Senate, where it is unclear whether the Republican majority will take up the bill. The measure could also be included in the next round of coronavirus relief legislation currently being negotiated by lawmakers and the White House.
The bill would additionally create a presumption that an officer who contracts the disease picked it up on the job, for purposes of benefits eligibility.
How Our 9/11 Fund Lawyers Can Help
At Pitta & Baione, our 9/11 fund lawyers help September 11th attack survivors and first responders get the full range of healthcare benefits and compensation available under federal programs.
That includes people who have since been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. We are continuing to support clients and work aggressively to get them the benefits they deserve during this unprecedented time.
Our 9/11 fund lawyers are also closely monitoring federal efforts to establish a new COVID-19 compensation fund for responders and essential workers. We support any and all assistance for people at the front line of the fight against COVID-19 and we are prepared to assist them in obtaining benefits if and when a new program is created.
If you or a loved one is looking for more information on the potential benefits program for essential workers during the coronavirus pandemic, we can help. Our 9/11 fund lawyers are continuing to help new and existing clients around the clock on matters related to September 11th benefits.
For more information about eligibility requirements of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund and the World Trade Center Health Program, contact a lawyer at Pitta & Baione LLP at 844-982-2667 or email@example.com.