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Bill would provide first responders comp for mental injuries

Posted On: Jan. 16, 2020 1:17 PM CST

first responders

Legislation introduced Monday in Nebraska’s unicameral legislature would provide workers compensation for first responders suffering from work-related mental injuries.

L.B. 963, sponsored by Republican Sen. Tom Brewer, would revise current state statutes to allow for the compensation of personal injuries for mental injuries and mental illnesses suffered by a first responder regardless of whether they are accompanied by a physical injury.

To collect workers comp, the legislation would require first responders to present evidence that they received a clear mental health evaluation prior to service, provide proof that they participated in resilience training prior to any incident and at least annually, and present an affidavit from a mental health professional stating that they suffer from a service-related mental injury or mental illness.

The bill also stipulates that the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services reimburse for the cost of annual resilience training and that first responder employers must develop guidelines for such training.

The bill has been referred to the legislature’s Business and Labor Committee.