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Firefighters back Collins

Oct 17, 2020

The Professional Firefighters of Maine on Oct. 15 announced their support for Sen. Susan Collins in her reelection for the U.S. Senate.

“Sen. Collins is a tireless advocate for Maine firefighters, and we are proud to support her,” said Michael Crouse, president of the Professional Firefighters of Maine. “In the Senate, Susan looks out for us. She fights to protect our health care, and she makes sure we have the resources we need to keep Maine communities and families safe. We need Sen. Collins in the U.S. Senate and on the front lines for Maine’s First Responders.”

The Professional Firefighters of Maine represents over 1,400 members.

As co-chair of the Congressional Fire Services Caucus, Sen. Collins has been a longtime champion for Maine's firefighters and all firefighters throughout he United States, "working to ensure we have the resources we need to protect the communities and families our members serve every day," the announcement said.

According to the announcement, Collins also:

  • Helped create the Assistance to Firefighters and SAFER grant programs in 2000 and 2003 to help provide fire departments nationwide with the resources and personnel they need.
  • Fought to pass a 2018 measure that calls on the CDC to study the relationship between exposure to dangerous fumes and toxins and the incidence of cancer in firefighters. That research helps scientists develop better gear and techniques to help keep firefighters safe on the job.
  • Sponsored the Federal Firefighters Fairness Act of 2019, which would ensure federal firefighters suffering from certain lingering illnesses are eligible for federal workers’ compensation.
  • Sponsor the Fair RETIRE Act, which would protect the pensions of first responders who have been injured on the job.
  • Sponsored the Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act, which protects collective bargaining rights for police officers, firefighters and EMS personnel.
  • Fought to secure $1.25 billion for Maine under the CARES Act to respond to COVID-19, and worked to get an additional $100 million just to support firefighters. She helped get that money out the door quickly so fire departments could use the funding to purchase PPE.
  • Is working to advance the bipartisan SMART Act and other efforts to create additional COVID-19 stimulus relief legislation, which would give Maine’s local governments and municipalities an additional $2 billion to address the expected revenue shortfalls that could potentially result in layoffs of state and local public servants, including firefighters.
  • Co-sponsored legislation to provide compensation for illnesses incurred by first responders and others in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, which was signed into law in January 2019.
  • Led the way in advancing legislation that would provide collective bargaining rights to first responders in all of the Right to Work states.

 

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