Leahy bill expands benefits for first responders' families
Montpelier, Vermont - August 12, 2010
EMTs and firefighters met with Sen. Patrick Leahy on Wednesday to thank him for his efforts to extend benefits to the families of emergency workers.
Forty-nine-year-old Dale Long of the Bennington Rescue Squad died last June when the ambulance he was driving went off the road and hit a tree. That prompted Leahy to introduce the Dale Long Emergency Medical Service Providers Protection Act.
Currently only first responders who work for a state or town get federal benefits. Leahy's bill would add nonprofit and volunteer ambulance organizations to the list.
"It'll make me feel better knowing that if something does happen to me, that they will be taken care of," says Lynn Doney of Barre Town EMS.
Leahy says he will continue to push for the legislation, which passed committee but has yet to be voted on by the full Senate.