New York Gov. George Pataki has signed legislation into law that will provide an enhanced accidental death benefit to Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) who are employed by the New York City Fire Department.
“The brave men and women who serve as Emergency Medical Technicians face danger on a daily basis and respond with speed and professionalism in coming to the assistance of their fellow New Yorkers during an emergency,” the Governor said. “This new law will ensure that the family members of those EMTs who make the ultimate sacrifice while performing their duties receive the same benefits as those who work in other high-risk public safety jobs.”
In 1996, New York City’s Emergency Medical Service was merged into the New York City Fire Department. Currently, EMTs receive the same death benefits as other city employees in lower-risk, non-emergency jobs.
As a result of this new law, surviving family members of EMTs who are killed in the line of duty will receive a yearly pension equal to 100 percent of the salary the EMT was earning at the time of his or her death.
More than 3,000 Fire Department of New York EMTs and their supervisors respond to nearly 2 million emergency calls each year. Six have been killed in the line of duty since 1994.
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