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Local 2507

Mayor signs off on additional pay for hero EMT’s family

The Mayor’s action on behalf of the Arroyo family underscored the disparities in pay and benefits between EMS workers and Police Officers and Firefighters.

EMT and Local 2507 member Yadira Arroyo was killed on March 19 when a carjacker ran her over with her ambulance.

The tragic death of Emergency Medical Technician Yadira Arroyo underscored the disparities in pay and benefits between EMS workers and Police Officers and Firefighters. One of the inequities is that families of Police Officers and Firefighters receive line-of-duty benefits, but the families of EMTs – members of DC 37 Local 2507 – do not.

In a special exception, Mayor Bill de Blasio granted the line-of-duty benefit to Arroyo’s family. The benefit is equal to one year’s pay.

“We are very grateful to Mayor de Blasio for giving the Arroyo family this benefit, but it should not be discretionary. It should be for every member,” said Israel Miranda, president of Local 2507. “We’re not talking about a lot of money.”

In addition to the mayor’s support, state legislators Peter Abbate and Martin Golden are drafting legislation to make emergency medical services personnel eligible for the line-of-duty benefit.

EMT Arroyo was killed and her partner Monique Williams injured on the afternoon of March 16 when a disturbed man confronted them on a Bronx street and hijacked their ambulance.

Police say he got behind the steering wheel, put the ambulance in reverse and ran over Arroyo, dragging her body 15 feet. She died later that evening.

City Council member Elizabeth Crowley, chair of the Committee on Fire and Criminal Justice, has also expressed her support for EMS workers and their fight for parity with other first responders.

“I believe they are underpaid and not respected as a uniformed agency as they need to be,” Crowley recently told the civil service newspaper The Chief-Leader.

New Yorkers were moved by the tragedy and have donated $120,000 to a fund for the family started by the Daily News. Arroyo left behind five boys, including 20-year-old Kenneth, who is following in his mother’s footsteps and studying to become an EMT.

The American Federation of State, County and Employees, DC 37’s national union, has donated $10,000 to the family.

DC 37 members can donate by visiting the DC 37 Blog where you can find info about how to contribute.