SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – State Rep. Angie Guerrero-Cuellar, D-Chicago, is demanding more resources to help first responders face the stresses of the job by advancing legislation to expand access to confidential counseling and mental health resources for police officers, firefighters and emergency medical technicians.

“When we support our police, paramedic and fire personnel as they respond to these life and death emergencies, we need to extend that same support as they work through on-the-job traumas in a safe, confidential setting,” Guerrero-Cuellar said. “Emergency first responders are heroes in every way, but they aren’t invulnerable to what they see and experience in their line of work. This legislation can and will positively shape the lives of our emergency responders statewide, by prioritizing their wellbeing and supporting their families.”

Currently, cities and counties that cover expenses related to the care of police officers and firefighters directly, rather than through a workers’ compensation insurer, are not required to cover costs associated with mental health counseling. Guerrero-Cuellar is working with the Cook County Sheriff’s Office to advance Senate Bill 3538, which would ensure these units of government cover counseling and other resources to meet the mental health needs of first responders. The legislation received bipartisan approval in the Senate.

Guerrero-Cuellar has consistently championed reforms to better support emergency personnel on and off the scene. She passed a reforms package that cracks down on dangerous street racing and side shows, increases reporting on accidents involving school buses and regulates car headlamps (House Bill 5325).

Rep. Angelica Guerrero-CuellarRep. Angelica Guerrero-Cuellar

22nd District

Springfield Office:
235-E Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-0584

District Office:
6500 South Pulaski Road
Chicago, IL 60629
(773) 581-8000