August 1, 2022

Young Legislation Supporting Law Enforcement Officials Passes Senate

WASHINGTON – Today, two bills supported by U.S. Senator Todd Young (R-Ind.) to help Indiana’s law enforcement community passed the Senate by unanimous consent.

“Our police officers on the front lines make sacrifices every day to keep Hoosiers safe. We must work to protect our law enforcement as they protect our communities, which is exactly what these two bills will accomplish. I’m glad the entire Senate unanimously agreed to advance these important bills and I call on the House to pass them quickly,” said Senator Young. 

The Fighting Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Act of 2022 would establish mental health programs for America’s first responders who often face long-term effects from providing life-saving services in moments of crisis. The Invest to Protect Act of 2022 would make the COPS grant program at the U.S. Department of Justice more easily accessible for smaller law enforcement agencies with fewer than 200 sworn officers. These bills were voted out of the Senate Judiciary Committee in May of this year during National Police Week.

More information about the bills below:

Fighting Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Act of 2022:

Public safety officers, police officers, firefighters, EMTs, and 911 dispatchers are at a higher risk of developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and acute stress disorder (ASD) than the general public due to their proximity to stressful, graphic, and life-threatening situations in their job.

The Fighting PTSD Act of 2022 would require the Attorney General, in conjunction with the Director of the Office of Community Oriented Policing Service (COPS), to propose a program to Congress for making state-of-the-art treatment available to public safety officers dealing with job-related post-traumatic stress disorder.

The legislation builds on Senator Young’s previous efforts to support public safety officers. Senator Young was the lead Republican sponsor of the Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act of 2017, which required the Department of Justice (DOJ) to produce a report on how mental health practices implemented by the Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs might apply to law enforcement. The legislation was signed into law in January 2018 and DOJ’s report was released in March 2019.

More bill information here.

Invest to Protect Act of 2022:

Ninety percent of law enforcement agencies in the U.S. are smaller than 200 full-time sworn officers. These small agencies protect and serve our communities with strained budgets and a growing need for additional training, equipment, and funding.

The Invest to Protect Act of 2022 would establish a grant through the COPS program that would be limited to local law enforcement agencies with fewer than 200 sworn officers. The bill further requires that the grant application take no longer than 30 minutes to complete, so applicants can spend their time protecting their communities instead of navigating bureaucratic red tape. Through the creation of this new grant, in addition to the existing COPS grant opportunities, these smaller yet vital agencies would have greater access to federal resources to keep our officers and communities safe.