Donovan, House Pass Series of Bills to Support Law Enforcement
Washington, DC—May 17, 2018....Congressman Dan Donovan (NY-11) and the U.S. House of Representatives this week voted to pass four bills to support law enforcement officers. The series of legislation includes measures to toughen federal penalties against those who assault law enforcement agents, enhance the safety of correctional officers, provide increased resources to address the backlog of cases related to criminals identified through DNA testing, and recognize the importance of strengthening relationships between law enforcement and the communities they serve.
Congressman Donovan said, “The brave women and men in blue who dedicate their lives to protecting our families and nation deserve our unyielding support. We are indebted to their selfless work, and I’m proud to help pass legislation that better protects our officers and strengthens the resources they have to do their jobs.”
Bills passed include:
- The Protect and Serve Act (H.R. 5698): This legislation creates new federal penalties for individuals who deliberately attack or attempt to cause significant bodily injury to any law enforcement officer. This bill aims to deter attacks against police officers who have increasingly been targeted and face higher levels of hostility because of the uniform they wear. In 2016 alone, statistics showed a 250% increase in police ambush deaths.
- The Lieutenant Osvaldo Albarati Correctional Officer Self Protection Act (H.R. 613): This bill helps protect correctional officers and their Second Amendment rights by requiring federal prison facilities to provide officers with areas to safely store their personal firearms while on duty. Federal correctional officers – who are often the target of criminals – were previously prohibited from storing their personal firearms at correctional facilities, which prevented them from carrying them while traveling to and from work. The bill honors Lt. Osvaldo Albarati, a federal corrections officer who was shot and killed as he drove home after his shift. Albarati was unarmed and unable to protect himself due to prison restrictions on officers storing their personal firearms while at work.
- The Justice Served Act (H.R. 4854): This legislation authorizes the Department of Justice to allocate grants to states or local governments to help address the backlog of violent crime cases involving suspects identified through DNA evidence. Giving law enforcement the tools they need to identify and prosecute offenders will help better protect our communities.
- H.Res. 285: Expresses the importance of enhancing the collaboration between members of law enforcement and the communities they serve to improve communication and collaboration.
Donovan is a steadfast supporter of law enforcement officers and agents. Last year, he voted to pass the Thin Blue Line Act and American Law Enforcement Heroes Act to toughens penalties against cop killers and bolster law enforcement job opportunities for veterans.
The passage of these bills coincides with National Police Week, a time to honor and thank the women and men in blue who selflessly serve and protect our communities each day.