Senator John Rafferty (R-44) joined legislators and law enforcement officials at a State Capitol rally to recognize 2015 as the “Year of the Law Enforcement Official” in Pennsylvania and focus public attention on the increasing dangers that law enforcement officials face daily.
Rafferty was joined by Representative Mike Vereb (R-150) and Representative Martina White (R-170) at the event. Rafferty and White are sponsors of Senate Resolution 81 and House Resolution 232, making the official designation. According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, 126 law enforcement officers died in the line of duty in 2014, which is a 24 percent increase from 2013.
“The recent ambush-style attacks on two Pennsylvania State Police Troopers in Blooming Grove, Pennsylvania, and two New York Police Department officers in New York City, have violently demonstrated that law enforcement officers are being marked for attack,” Rafferty said. “We all need to remember the tremendous and increasing dangers these men and women face every day and support the work they do for us.”
He added that police officers face a wide range of safety and health hazards, including assaults, emotional trauma, vehicle crashes, stress, exposure to infectious diseases and chemicals and terrorist attacks.
Vereb said police officers are constantly being faced with the unknown and the unpredictable, making their profession extremely dangerous. “Law enforcement officers bring criminals to justice and protect our communities,” said Vereb. “They put their lives on the line each and every time they wear the uniform and put on the badge.”
White said it is important for all citizens and communities to understand the challenges that both officers and their families face. “I ask my fellow Pennsylvanians to better appreciate what our police do for us,” White said. “Let’s commit to standing against violence directed at law enforcement and to better understand the complexities of the police-community relationship.”
Senator Rafferty – Ryan Boop 717 787- 1398
Representative Vereb – Dan Massing 717-772-9845
Representative White – David Foster 267-207-0207