For Immediate Release: May 9, 2011

Insurance Commissioner Asks Legislators to Support Fund for Volunteer First Responders

Raleigh -- Insurance Commissioner and State Fire Marshal Wayne Goodwin today encourages members of the North Carolina General Assembly, as they take on the very difficult task of balancing the state budget, to remember the importance of caring for our volunteer first responders.

The Volunteer Safety Workers' Compensation Fund was created in the late 1990s to provide workers' compensation benefits to members of eligible volunteer fire departments and volunteer rescue/EMS units who have suffered injury or death in the line of duty.

Individual volunteers and member departments pay into the fund annually; however, a significant revenue source for the fund is an appropriation from the state's General Fund.

"Volunteer fire and rescue workers put their own safety on the line to help protect their communities," said Goodwin. "It is important that we provide volunteer fire and rescue departments with as much support as possible. I implore our legislators to fund the Volunteer Safety Workers' Compensation Fund in a way that allows it to continue to meet its obligations to its members."

For more information on the Volunteer Safety Workers' Compensation Fund, click on this link.