Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced his support for local legislation to provide health insurance for the survivors of all city employees fatally stricken by 9/11 illnesses.
Currently, coverage is limited to the surviving spouses and domestic partners of police officers, firefighters, emergency medical technicians and higher-ranking employees in those titles who died during their active service or in retirement.
This legislation would close a gap in current law so that all city employees who die of a 9/11 illness are treated the same.
“On our city’s darkest day, thousands of city employees answered the call,” de Basio said. “They didn’t hesitate. We need to be there for their families, now and always.”
About 5,000 employees across several city agencies and in various titles could be covered by this legislation over time. This population represents city employees whose 9/11 service has been verified by their respective public retirement system.
The legislation now moves to the City Council. Speaker Corey Johnson said he looks forward to reviewing it.
“The Council is committed to ensuring that the families and loved ones of all 9/11 victims are treated with dignity and fairness,” he said.
“DC 37 has been out front in the fight to ensure that those families get the health benefits they need,” noted DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido.
“We applaud Mayor de Blasio and City Council Speaker Johnson for supporting legislation that would protect the families of 9/11 rescue and recovery workers and volunteers who risked their lives in that horrific attack against our city.”