“The Justice Department welcomes the passage of the Public Safety Officer Support Act of 2022, which will enable us to provide support to the families of fallen officers who have died by suicide and to officers who have suffered debilitating trauma-related mental health injuries.”
The Biden Administration passed the bipartisan Public Safety Officer Support Act. The law that for the first time recognizes suicide as a line-of-duty death. The new law expands on a benefits program for the family members of public safety officers. The Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Assistance will direct expansion of the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits Program.
Sens. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., and John Cornyn, R-Texas, introduced the legislation in February.
“This will ensure public safety officers experiencing PTSD and families coping with the tragic loss of a loved one to suicide can get the support they deserve.”
The bill will apply retroactively to January 1, 2019 allowing the families of the four officers who died by suicide following the January 6, 2021, riot eligible for death benefits. These heroes include Metropolitan Police Officers Kyle DeFreytag, Gunther Hashida and Jeffrey Smith, and US Capitol Police Officer Howie Liebengood.