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Collins Bill to Protect Law Enforcement Passes

Collins Bill to Protect Law Enforcement Passes

WASHINGTON—Today, the House Judiciary Committee marked up H.R. 2137, the Federal Law Enforcement Self Defense and Protection Act. The bill passed the committee by a voice vote. Congressman Collins (R-Ga.), who authored the bill, issued the following statement after the vote:

“Ensuring that federal law enforcement officers have the tools they need to defend themselves is critical to protecting them from the threats they face every day. As the son of a Georgia State Trooper, I recognize that law enforcement can face threats on or off duty. I introduced this legislation to ensure that there is a consistent federal policy governing officers’ ability to protect themselves—regardless of their duty status. During the lapse in funding in 2013, about 1800 federal officers were forced to hand over their government issued firearms in a seemingly arbitrary decision. These officers are highly trained and know the responsibilities associated with possessing a weapon; it does not make sense to disarm them if there is a lapse in federal appropriations, especially as our country faces increasing national security threats.

“Those who would seek to cause chaos may even take advantage of an opportunity for crime knowing that law enforcement is temporarily weakened. Officers make a commitment to protect and serve, and this legislation will clarify federal policy to ensure they can defend themselves and the public in event of a furlough or a lapse in appropriations. I thank Chairman Goodlatte for his support, and hope that this bill’s broad bipartisan support, coupled with support from the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, the Fraternal Order of Police, and the National Association of Police Organizations will help ensure this bill receives a swift vote on the House Floor.”

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