During National Police Week, Stauber Leads Bipartisan Legislation to Strengthen Workplace Rights of Public Safety Officers

May 13, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – During National Police Week, Congressman Pete Stauber (MN-08) led a bipartisan group of Representatives in introducing the Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act, which will ensure labor rights to all public safety officers. Specifically, this legislation will allow public safety officers to form a labor union, collectively bargain for hours and wages, and provide resolution mechanisms for impasses during negotiations.

Of this legislation, Congressman Stauber stated, “As a former police officer who started a union in Duluth, Minnesota, I know how vital labor rights are for the men and women who put their lives on the line every day in service to our communities. This past year has been especially difficult for our public safety officers, so it has become all the more important to ensure they have a voice in the workplace. That’s why on this National Police Week, I am proud partner with 20 of my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to strengthen the workplace rights of law enforcement officers, firefighters, and EMS personnel.”

National President of the Fraternal Order of Police, Patrick Yoes made the following statement in support of this legislation, “We’re extremely proud to partner with Representative Stauber and 20 original cosponsors on this important issue and are ready to do our part to ensure that this legislation gets across the finish line. Despite the partisan climate on Capitol Hill, this bipartisan group of lawmakers—three of whom are former law enforcement officers—came together to advance the right of our law enforcement and other public safety officers to bargain collectively. The ability to talk to your employer about workplace issues is a fundamental right of all American workers. The men and women in public safety, who put themselves in harm’s way as part of their job, should undoubtedly have their rights recognized as well.”

Executive Director of the National Association of Police Organizations, Bill Johnson stated, “The National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO) has long believed that public safety is best protected through effective partnerships between first responders on the front lines and the agencies that employ them. The Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act will provide law enforcement officers, firefighters, and emergency medical service workers in all 50 states the basic right to discuss workplace issues with their employers. There are many law enforcement officers who put their lives on the line every day to preserve the security and peace that our nation enjoys, but these same officers are denied the basic American rights of collective bargaining for wages, hours, and safe working conditions. This legislation will ensure that all public safety officers have the opportunity to benefit from a productive partnership with their employers. We thank Congressman Stauber for championing the Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act and for standing up for the rights of law enforcement officers.”

Second Vice President and Legislative Director of the Minnesota Fraternal Order of the Police, Patrick Chelmo stated, “Day in and day out public safety professionals, including the men and women of American law enforcement, protect our communities. It is only fair that Congress work to protect them.  The Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act does just that. Collective bargaining, labor unions, and mediation processes allow our public safety officers to focus on what matters most: Keeping our communities safe.”

The following bipartisan group are original cosponsors of the Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act:

Stephanie Murphy (D-FL), Brad Sherman (D-CA), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ), Val Demings (D-FL), Jahana Hayes (D-CT), Norma Torres (D-CA), Raul Ruiz (D-CA), Salud Carbajal (D-CA), Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), Rodney David (R-IL), David McKinley (R-WV), Don Young (R-AK), Andy Kim (D-NJ), Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), Mike Bost (R-IL), Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), Chris Smith (R-NJ), Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL), Tom Reed (R-NY)