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NFFF and the Public Safety Officer Support Act (HR 6943)

NFFF and the Public Safety Officer Support Act (HR 6943)

Public Safety Officer Support Act

Public Safety Officer Support Act

On August 1st, the Senate approved by unanimous consent Bill HR 6943—the Public Safety Officer Support Act. The bill was previously approved by the House 402-17 on May 18th. The legislation, which was signed into law by President Biden on August 16, 2022, makes significant changes to the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits (PSOB) program.

About the New PSOB Benefits

It is estimated that in a fire department, suicide is three times more likely to happen than a line-of-duty death. With the new law, under certain circumstances, the survivors of public safety officers will be eligible for PSOB benefits if the officer died as a result of suicide or has become permanently disabled as a result of attempted suicide or post-traumatic stress. Public law PL 117-172 applies to actions taken by officers on or after January 1, 2019.

Under the new law, “post-traumatic stress disorder, or trauma and stress related disorders… shall be presumed to constitute a personal injury within the meaning of…” the PSOB regulations.

For survivors to be eligible for these benefits, the officer in question must have been diagnosed by a licensed medical or mental health professional, contacted or attempted to contact an employee assistance program, and must have experienced a mass casualty, mass shooting, mass fatality, or traumatic event that was a substantial factor in the disorder.

NFFF: Serving the Families and Organizations of the Fallen

When a firefighter dies in the line of duty, the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation provides their families with a place to turn. The Foundation creates and implements a variety of programs and services designed to support Fire Hero Families. Learn more about our Family Programs.

The Foundation also offers training to help fire departments handle a line-of-duty death. Immediately after a death, departments receive both technical assistance and personal support to help the department. Learn more about our Fire Service Programs.

Background and Resources

Downloadable Materials:


If you’re thinking about suicide, are worried about a friend or loved one, or would like emotional support, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline network is available 24/7 across the United States by calling or texting to 988. The Lifeline is funded by the U.S. Department of Health’s Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and provides free and confidential support to people in suicidal crisis or mental health-related distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, across the U.S.