The Connecticut General Assembly unanimously passed a bill today creating a fund for first responders, teachers and others who suffered psychological trauma from the Sandy Hook shooting.
Backed by private donations, the new fund will supplement an existing workers compensation fund that pays for lost wages resulting from a workplace physical injury, but does not currently compensate people for purely mental trauma.
“While 82 days have passed, the anguish of that day is still raw for many,” said Gov. Dannel Malloy in a press release, commending the Legislature on its bipartisan effort. “In the depth of that anguish, we in government have undertaken a critically important debate, one where complete consensus will be difficult if not impossible. But that should not stop us from doing the good and decent things that honor those who serve our communities, especially those who have done so admirably in our darkest hour.”
At least two Newtown police officers have been unable to work since the Dec. 14 shooting, when they were some of the first to enter the building and confront the bodies of the slain young children and teachers. Many others have worked on and off since December.
In all, some 150 to 200 individuals stand to benefit from the newly created fund.