Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis issued the following statement regarding the final unanimous passage of his top legislative priority, Senate Bill 376. The bill will now be ready to head to Gov. Rick Scott for signature.
“From day one this has been a life or death issue. Our firefighters are attempting suicide at a rate FIVE TIMES HIGHER than the general population, and they are thinking about suicide at a rate NINE TIMES HIGHER than the general population. We’ve heard horrific stories about loss of life, and the impact tragedy has on our first responders and their families.
“First responders show up for us every day, without hesitation or questioning our politics, and today Florida showed up for them. Last year four states, including Texas, increased mental health benefits for first responders. I’m proud we can now add Florida to that list.
“To those who refused to support this measure from the beginning: we got it done without you.
“Thank you to Senate President Joe Negron, Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran, Sen. Lauren Book, Rep. Matt Willhite, and all of the co-sponsors in both chambers.”