Fla. cities oppose first responder PTSD bill
“'I find it distasteful, I find it lacking in humanity, and I find it just downright shameful the position to say that this bill isn't necessary,” Rep. Katie Edwards-Walpole said
By EMS1 Staff
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — A current Florida bill that would provide benefits for first responders who suffer from PTSD is being opposed by several city governments.
WTSP reported that Rep. Katie Edwards-Walpole voted in favor of the bill that would make first responders with PTSD eligible for workers’ compensation, and called out city governments who did not support it.
“I find it distasteful, I find it lacking in humanity, and I find it just downright shameful the position to say that this bill isn't necessary,” Edwards-Walpole said.
Edwards-Walpole said she received emails from cities such as Cape Coral, Boynton Beach and Pinellas Park, who urged lawmakers to vote “no.”
“Emphasis for first responders' mental health should focus on treatment and education, and not revolve around additional workers' compensation benefits, which are already significantly more robust for first responders,” an email from the city of Pinellas Park read.
Officials said the cities are mainly worried about an increase in cost, but a recent study by the National Council on Compensation Insurance found that local governments would only see a minimal increase.