First responder PTSD bill left out volunteers, some EMS workers; Fire departments in Racine, Dane counties weigh in

  • Source: WTMJ-TV NBC 4 Milwaukee
  • Published: 06/09/2021 09:11 AM

Earlier this year, Gov Tony Evers signed a bill allowing first responders to file for workers' compensation to seek treatment for mental injuries they suffer on the job, namely PTSD. It was hailed as a victory for first responders. However, those that are not full-time firefighters or police officers, including EMS workers not attached to a full-time fire department as well as volunteer firefighters, were not included in the final piece of legislation that was signed into law. The I-Team discovered it's something sorely needed in the volunteer first responder community. In Racine County, the Rochester Volunteer Fire Company lost one of its own to suicide earlier this year. Chief Jack Biermann said Assistant Chief Cathy Wagner was always quick to remind her fellow firefighters that she and the chief were always there to talk through the trauma they saw on calls.


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