Municipalities, unions reach compromise on PTSD benefits

May 13, 2019 GMT

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The Connecticut Conference of Municipalities has reached a compromise with unionized firefighters and police on legislation that will provide first responders with post-traumatic stress disorder benefits for up to one year.

The agreement announced Monday follows six years of attempts to require Connecticut worker’s compensation laws cover PTSD for first responders who witness a tragic incident, such as the deadly 2012 Newtown school shooting. Municipal leaders had opposed previous bills, voicing concern about the financial implications.

Under the agreement, a PTSD diagnosis must be made by a licensed psychiatrist or psychologist in accordance with national standards. A first responder must experience one of six qualifying events, including viewing a deceased child. The compromise does not provide permanent benefits.

The compromise bill was expected to clear the Appropriations Committee on Monday.