A coalition of unions and professional groups representing federal employees and retirees is supporting legislation to boost death benefits for federal employees. The Federal-Postal Coalition notes that the $10,000 payment to employees who are killed or who die of injuries sustained in the line of duty has been the same since 1997 and that an $800 funeral allowance has not increased since 1966. Under a recent proposal from OPM, those amounts would be raised to $100,000 and $8,800, respectively. The proposal also seeks to better define the circumstances under which the former benefit is paid, since there is variation among agencies. The groups say that since 1992, more than 3,000 federal employees have been killed in the line of duty, including in terrorist and criminal acts and natural disasters. A bill introduced late in the just-concluded session of Congress will have to be reintroduced in the new Congress to be considered.
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