Overseas Security Personnel Fairness Act
NS.com recently learned of new legislation in the works regarding Overseas Contractors and their life insurance policies. This legislation is a direct response to a situation regarding Teammate and close friend of NS.com, Glen Doherty who was killed while working as an Overseas Contractor on September 11th 2012. We reached out to the The Glen Doherty Memorial Foundation regarding this proposed Act. Glen’s sister was kind enough to provide the following details behind the newly proposed Overseas Security Personnel Fairness Act.
The Doherty Family has been working behind the scenes for over two years to bring to light the shortfalls of the Defense Base Act. A policy which was originally intended to help protect Contractors working oversees now does anything but that. When we learned that Glen had purchased an insurance policy through the agency (multiple times) that he worked for and the policy would never have covered him we were saddened that such negligence was happening at such a high level of government. This knowledge set us on a course to try and amend this policy to help protect Glen’s legacy and to make sure that other contractors did not fall into the same situation.
The legislation that Representative Lynch has filed is a great step in the right direction. Not only would it ensure that this insurance policy was fair for all contractors, it would retroactively go back and reimburse those denied coverage from 2001 forward. With only two weeks left for Congress this term we hope that this legislation will attract attention and ultimately be enacted.
The work we do with the Glen Doherty Memorial Foundation is a wonderful source of pride for everyone who knew and loved Glen. It truly embodies what he stood for; bringing amazing people together for a cause and having a great time while doing it. In 2014 we were able to award 8 scholarships to members of the Special Operations community and their families. For more information about the foundation or how to inquire about a scholarship please visit The Glen Doherty Memorial Foundation.
The word Benghazi has become a political buzz word on both sides of the aisle. Many committees have been formed, and hearings seemed to never end. Imagine all the good that could have been accomplished if all that time and money went to what really matters; making sure that our Special Forces are set up to succeed and have what they need to get the job done. And when the worst happens taking care of their personnel, in this case a Navy Seal with 17 years of service to this country. I would ask, what is more important than that?
Sister of Glen Doherty
President, The Glen Doherty Memorial Foundation
Official News Release of Proposed Act
WASHINGTON, Nov. 17 — Rep. Stephen F. Lynch, D-Mass. (8th CD), issued the following news release:
Today, Congressman Stephen F. Lynch (MA-08) introduced H.R. 5721, the Overseas Security Personnel Fairness Act. This legislation would remove a significant penalty in federal law that currently prohibits the families of overseas federal contractors who are killed in the line of duty from receiving full death benefits if the deceased employee is unmarried with no children or other dependents. The families of overseas federal contractors, including the family of former Navy SEAL and C.I.A. security contractor Glen Doherty, have faced significant difficulty in receiving death benefits under federally-required insurance policies when their loved one is killed on the job but is single with no dependents. Mr. Doherty was killed during the September 2012 terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate and classified Annex in Benghazi, Libya.
The Defense Base Act of 1941 requires that overseas federal contractors obtain so-called Defense Base Act insurance in order to make certain that injured workers are entitled to workers’ compensation for employment-related injuries and their survivors are entitled to death benefits in the event of a job-related tragedy. Regrettably, current law does not extend death benefits, aside from $3,000 in funeral expenses, to the family or designated beneficiary of a federal contractor who is killed in the line of duty overseas but is unmarried with no dependents. H.R. 5721 would therefore amend the Defense Base Act to ensure that full death benefits are extended to the families or designated beneficiaries of these federal contractors who have died in service to our country as a result of a war-risk hazard or an act of terrorism. H.R. 5721 would also provide retroactive death benefits to the designated beneficiaries or families of such federal contractors who have been killed in the line of duty since September 11, 2001, including Defense Base Act cases resulting from Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and the terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
“It is flatly wrong that the Defense Base Act requires federal workers to take out an insurance policy before they are deployed overseas and accepts the payment of insurance premiums from those workers, but does not provide death benefits to their families or estate solely based on marital and child status,” said Congressman Lynch. “The Overseas Security Personnel Fairness Act would ensure that courageous Americans, like Glen Doherty, are allowed to provide the protections and benefits that they intended their loved ones to receive in the event of their death in the line of duty and in the service of their country,” added Lynch.
Glen Doherty was killed in September of 2012 while defending the classified Annex near the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi against a terrorist attack that also resulted in the deaths of U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, former Navy SEAL and C.I.A. contractor Tyrone Woods, and U.S. State Department officer Sean Smith. While Mr. Doherty was unmarried with no children or other dependents, he activated his mandatory Defense Base Act insurance policy before deploying for a scheduled 54-day mission to Libya beginning on September 7, 2012 with the reasonable belief that his policy would pay benefits to his estate or next of kin in the event of his death.
For more information regarding the Glen Doherty Memorial Foundation or to donate please click Here. Special thanks to Kate Quigley for taking time to provide us with the complete story behind the newly proposed act.