Flag honors for federal workers killed on job

WASHINGTON – Families of federal workers killed on the job can be presented with an American flag on behalf of a grateful nation, under legislation signed into law today.

Veterans groups had raised concerns about the idea earlier this fall, saying it would blur the lines between honors for military service and recognition of civilian work. Bill sponsor Rep. Richard Hanna, R-NY, calmed those concerns by amending his original proposal to ensure that those being honored died as a result of “a criminal act, an act of terrorism, a natural disaster,” or a similar circumstance.

Supporters said the goal of the measure is to provide additional public recognition for those employees who die in the line of duty. The measure passed unanimously in the House and Senate.

According to Hanna’s office, nearly 3,000 federal employees have been killed on the job since 1992.

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