CHICAGO – A measure carried by state Rep. Fran Hurley, D-Chicago, that will provide additional financial support for the widows and orphans of Chicago firefighters and police officers was signed into law by Gov. J.B. Pritzker.
“When our first responders leave for work every day, they do so with the understanding they may not return home due to the dangerous situations they face on the job. These individuals make so many sacrifices to keep our communities safe and their families do as well,” Hurley said. “When the worst happens and we lose a first responder, it is essential we provide their families with the monetary support they need. Families of fallen first responders should not have to face financial hardship during their bereavement, and this bill helps to make that so.”
Before this bill was signed, the minimum annuity for widows of Chicago firefighters and police officers was at 125 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. As of 2022, the Federal Poverty line is set at $13,950 for single person, and $4,720 for each additional person. Senate Bill 4053 increases that floor so that the minimum annuity is no less than 150 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. This increase provides extra support to the families of fallen first responders.
“Although no amount of money can bring back a lost loved one, supporting the families of fallen first responders is one way we can show our gratitude for their dedication and service,” said Hurley. “Increasing the minimum annuity for the widows and orphans of Chicago firefighters and police will lead to greater economic security for these families so they can mourn their loved one without worrying about their finances. Thank you to Chicago FOP Lodge #7 and Chicago Fire Fighters Union Local 2 for bringing this serious issue to light.”
For more information on this bill, please visit www.ilga.gov.