Police, firefighters to be eligible for military care: Tsai

By Lee Hsin-fang and Jonathan Chin  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Sat, Jan 26, 2019 - Page 3

Active law enforcement personnel and firefighters are to qualify for healthcare and benefits at military hospitals, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said yesterday.

During a visit to the National Police Agency, Tsai said that she had told the Cabinet to propose a plan to give police officers and firefighters the same medical benefits as active military personnel.

The proposal would also entitle retired police officers and firefighters to the same welfare and long-term care benefits as retired military personnel, she said.

The Cabinet would draft policy in line with her directive and the administration would publish the details in due course, Tsai said.

Police officers should receive accolades for their tireless efforts, she said.

“On behalf of the nation, I convey our gratitude to you, guardians of the people, for keeping Taiwan safe,” Tsai said.

From this month, National Highway Police officers qualify for increased hazard pay, an initiative of Minister of the Interior Hsu Kuo-yung (徐國勇) and National Police Agency Director-General Chen Ja-chin (陳家欽), Tsai said.

A few days ago, Tsai met Yang Yu-chen (楊于辰), a highway police officer from Taoyuan’s Longtang Precinct, who had sustained facial injuries in the line of duty that required 400 stitches, she said.

“His courage in carrying on with life is deeply inspiring,” she said, adding that dedicated police officers like Yang deserve better medical care and equipment.

As modern society sees rapid changes, so do criminal methods and their consequences, she said.

She called on the police to implement the administration’s law enforcement priorities: the suppression of narcotics, fraud and organized crime.

The administration is also committed to tackling disinformation, which poses a growing threat to social stability and the public interest, Tsai said, adding that it would do so without infringing on freedom of speech.