SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Police officers who have put themselves in harm’s way will face fewer barriers to receiving the benefits they deserve under a bill introduced by state Rep. Kelly Burke, D-Evergreen Park, which passed out of the House Personnel and Pensions Committee last week.

“When our first responders put on their uniforms and go to work every day, they know full and well that they’re putting their safety at risk,” Burke said. “If a police officer is injured in the line of duty, the least that the public can do is ensure that officer is able to provide for his or her family while they heal.”

Chicago police officers must have permission from the Policemen’s Annuity and Benefit Fund board (PABF) to continue receiving disability benefits after becoming sick or injured due to their jobs. If an officer with a disability is denied continuation of their benefits, he or she may appeal the Board’s decision through administrative review. Currently, officers who are able to overturn the PABF’s decision are responsible for paying their own litigation fees and other court costs. Under Burke’s House Bill 2470, the PABF would be liable for the legal fees associated with such a case.

“Right now, when a Chicago firefighter is denied their disability benefits and overturns their pension board’s decision, that pension board is responsible for covering the legal fees,” Burke said. “This bill would bring Chicago police in line with firefighters, allowing these brave men and women to focus on their recovery instead of court fees.”

Burke serves the 36th Representative District, which contains parts of Chicago’s Beverly, Mt. Greenwood and Auburn-Gresham neighborhoods and portions of Evergreen Park, Oak Lawn, Chicago Ridge, Palos Heights, Palos Hills, Palos Park, Willow Springs and Worth. For more information, please contact Burke’s district office at 708-425-0571 or email kburke@kellyburkerep36.org.

Rep Kelly BurkeRep Kelly Burke

Assistant Majority Leader
(D-Evergreen Park)
36th District
Springfield Office:
246-W Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL   62706
(217) 782-0515
(217) 558-4553 FAX
District Office:
5144 W. 95th St.
Oak Lawn, IL  60453
(708) 425-0571
(708) 425-0642 FAX