Sen. Cunningham & Rep. GillSPRINGFIELD – A measure sponsored by State Senator Bill Cunningham and supported by State Representative Mary Gill, which provides mental health support and education for law enforcement officers who are facing post-traumatic stress disorder, was signed into law.

“This will provide law enforcement officers with the support and resources they need to manage their mental health,” said Cunningham, a Democrat who represents portions of Chicago and the Southwest Suburbs. “We created a supportive resource for officers seeking help after specific traumatic situations and for PTSD."

Cunningham’s legislation creates a Statewide PTSD Mental Health Coordinator, who will be responsible for providing resources, information and assistance to law enforcement officers who may be experiencing PTSD symptoms or other mental health issues related to their work.

The law is not intended to mandate that local police departments implement a plan to address PTSD or a set of requirements for how to operate mental health and wellness plans within their department, but rather to provide a supportive resource that departments and individual officers can turn to when seeking help.

“Law enforcement do many things to keep us safe, many times we don’t even realize how much safer our communities are because of them,” said State Representative Mary Gill (D-Chicago).“They deserve to have mental health resources available that are accessible and can be used when they so choose.”

Senate Bill 1543 was signed into law on Friday and takes effect Jan. 1, 2024.