On April 14, 2015, NAPO’s Executive Director, Bill Johnson, joined a bipartisan group of lawmakers from across the country in a press conference to introduce the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Reauthorization Act. Johnson stood with Senators and Representatives from across the nation as he urged members of Congress to pass this critical piece of legislation.
After nearly a decade long fight to stand by our first responders who answered the call of duty on September 11th, Congress finally fulfilled its moral obligation in late 2010 and provided our 9/11 heroes with the health care and financial compensation they deserved by passing the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act. With the Zadroga bill’s two critical programs – the World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program and the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund – set to expire in October 2015 and October 2016 respectively, the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Reauthorization Act would permanently extend these programs.
9/11 responders and survivors are still battling serious health crises resulting from exposure to the toxins at Ground Zero. More than 30,000 9/11 responders and survivors have an illness or injury caused by the attacks or their aftermath, and over two-thirds of those have more than one illness. Many are disabled and can no longer work. They are suffering from a host of chronic diseases: asthma, obstructive pulmonary disease and gastroesophageal reflux disease, and many more.
Medical research has identified more than 60 types of cancer caused by 9/11 toxins. More than 2,900 people have been diagnosed with cancers caused or made worse by the aftermath of the attacks - more than 800 New York Fire Department members and more than 550 New York Police Department personnel are struggling with serious 9/11-related illnesses, not including the more than 70 firefighters and 60 NYPD officers who have died from their 9/11-related illnesses.
Responders came from all over the country to aid in the response to the attacks. And some area residents, workers, and survivors have since moved and are currently receiving care in cities and states across the country. Participants enrolled in the World Trade Center Health Program for treatment currently reside in all 50 states and in 429 of the 435 Congressional districts in the country.
These heroes put their lives on the line to serve us, and must be afforded every resource available as they cope with chronic health conditions caused by exposure to toxic chemicals at the World Trade Center.
This legislation will also honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our nation. James Zadroga, a New York City Police Department Detective and member of NAPO, died of respiratory disease caused by his exposure to toxic chemicals at Ground Zero. It is our obligation and duty to remember these heroes and ensure that survivors who risked their lives to protect us continue to receive the treatment and compensation that they deserve.
NAPO has expended all available efforts to reintroduce and garner support for this important legislation. We will continue to work with fellow stakeholders to pass this legislation as expeditiously as possible.
Police officers are often called on to risk their safety on the job, but one officer from Cranston, Rhode Island risked his on his way into work one night recently to save the driver in a burning SUV.
According to media reports, Officer Brenton Medeiros was on his way into work late on the evening of March 24 when he came across an SUV that had just been in an accident near I-195 in East Providence. The SUV had crashed on a dead-end street and was on fire.
Officer Medeiros climbed down an embankment and jumped a fence to reach the SUV before pulling the elderly driver to safety.
You can see more on the story, including video from the accident and witness accounts, here.
An elderly veteran in Cranston, RI, finally got the recognition—and help—he deserved, thanks to the help of an IBPO Local 301 member sent to check on him.
Late last year, Cranston Police Officer Julie Furgasso answered a call for a wellbeing check on 89-year-old Alfred Bettencourt. When she found him in a difficult situation, she wound up working with Cranston Fire Captain Chuck Pollock to connect Bettencourt with local services. Seeing herself as his ‘adopted granddaughter,” Furgasso continued her work with Pollock on Bettencourt’s behalf, organizing a series of fundraisers to assist the World War II veteran.
When Furgasso and Pollock learned of his service, including his injury in France in 1944, they were determined to see him receive his proper honors. On March 9, 2015, Bettencourt received his long-overdue Purple Heart, as well as several other military honors, in a ceremony led by U.S. Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI).
You can see more on this story here on Cranston Online.
February 26, 2015
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is days away from closing its doors should Congress fail to pass a short term spending bill to fund the agency beyond February 27, 2015. If Congress is unable to pass legislation on the matter, 30,000 DHS employees will be out of work, at least temporarily. To make matters worse, a large portion of DHS employees facing furloughs have been deemed ‘essential,’ meaning they must report to work despite the fact that they may not be compensated for their work. The shutdown could affect NAGE / IBPO, EMS and IAEP members who work for DHS and we are taking the matter very seriously.
It has been rumored that some members in the US House of Representatives are trying to leverage the threat of a DHS shutdown to get President Obama’s executive action on immigration reversed. Regardless of the underlying reasons as to why a spending bill has not yet to be passed, DHS employees cannot afford another shutdown.
NAGE needs YOU to reach out to your Congressperson and urge them to pass a spending bill to avoid negative impacts of shutting down DHS. We have only 16 days before the shutdown affects the livelihoods of our hard-working federal employees. For too long, Congress has used dedicated federal employees as pawns in a political chess game and the buck needs to stop here!
Please use the link below to find your Congressional Representative. We need your help! Call today! Find your Representative: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/
IBPO/NAGE would like to congratulate the security supervisors with Boston University who recently voted unanimously to join the union.
“IBPO is proud to welcome these new members to our union, “said NAGE State Director David Bernard. “We have had a long and productive history with the Boston University security guards and look forward to building the same relationship with the security supervisors.”
Congratulations again to these new members on becoming the newest addition to the growing IBPO/NAGE family.