Dear COBA Members;
Yesterday COBA stood with Nassau's Police Unions as members of the Nassau County Legislature introduced two local Bills entitled the "First Responder Protection Package" that would provide much needed and timely protections for all of us in Law Enforcement. While the media often blends us together with our cousins in the Police Dept depending on their agenda, rest assured that COBA has worked hand in hand with members of the Legislature and the Police to ensure that these measures also pertain specifically to us in the law as Correction Officers
These Bills include first, the implementation of a "Blue Alert" System, similar to Amber Alerts or Silver Alerts, that would provide public notifications through cell phones and electronic media should any member of Law Enforcement in Nassau County be assaulted or killed by a perpetrator who is still on the loose.
Similar legislation has been presented in Albany, but due to the anti Law Enforcement climate there, the bill has stalled on the State level.
The second piece of legislation presented would amend Nassau County's Human Rights Law to include law enforcement officers as a protected class, enhancing legal protections to law enforcement personnel and other first responders under the Human Rights Law, to make them whole in the face of injury suffered at the hands of rioters or other individuals bent on lawless behavior, and to deter and punish such destructive behavior in order to protect the human rights of all people.
This law would set in stone that it shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice to harass, menace, assault or injure an individual due to such individual’s status as a first responder and that those who violate this provision will be subject to a substantial civil penalty and as well as civil liability to the first responder.
COBA and the other Law Enforcement Unions in Nassau County wish to thank Leg. Josh Lafazan, Leg. Delia Deriggi-Witton, Leg. Ellen Birnbaum and Leg. Arnold Drucker for sponsoring these bills, and we look forward to other legislators signing on and making these two bills permanent laws in Nassau County. Obviously there are anti-law enforcement groups out there that oppose this legislation, but we are happy to finally see the pendulum at least for the moment swing in favor of those who put their lives on the line every day for the citizens of Nassau County.
Please see below two videos from CBS News and News12 covering the announcement of these bills.
Always in Unity;
Brian Sullivan, COBA President