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IBPO, UMass Amherst Officers Get Legislative Win

January 8, 2009

The IBPO’s legislative team and the officers of IBPO Local 432 at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst have won passage of an important law concerning death benefits and minimum age for recruits.

Chapter 443 of the Acts and Resolves of 2008 amends state law to include police at the University of Massachusetts in the list of public safety professionals who qualify for the $100,000 line-of-duty benefit. The new law also mandates that recruits who wish to join the UMass police department be at least 21 years of age.

“The UMass officers are true police officers in every sense and are already recognized as such by several provisions in state law and other precedents,” said Ray McGrath, IBPO legislative director. “They deserve the same benefits and standards that municipal officers have.”

McGrath praised the union officers and members of Local 432A, the patrol officers, and 432B, the supervisors, for their high level of involvement in the legislative process. “UMass police visited their legislators and committee chairpeople regularly and made sure they were at every relevant hearing,” said McGrath. “Combining a strong professional legislative team with strong member involvement is the best way to convince lawmakers to support your bill.”