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Legislators Agree First Responders' Info Should Be Protected from Discovery

Monticello, NY – Legislators in the Public Safety Committee yesterday agreed to join other counties in calling upon New York State lawmakers to include first responders in the privacy protection afforded law enforcement in responding to crime scenes.

“Currently, only police officers’ personally identifying information can be excluded from ‘discovery’ documentation requested by defendants and their attorneys during criminal case preparations,” explained District 4 Legislator Nicholas Salomone, chair of the Legislature’s Public Safety Committee. “EMS workers, firefighters and other first responders do not enjoy such protection, meaning they are at risk of retaliation, intimidation or other witness tampering – simply because they were doing their job.”

Using language developed by Fulton County, Sullivan County legislators plan on sending a resolution to the State Legislature encouraging them to support the Emergency First Responders Privacy and Protection Act (S.7280/A.09107), which would close this loophole by keeping first responders’ names and other identifying information confidential.