February 26, 2015

The Honorable Mike Fitzpatrick
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Representative Fitzpatrick:

I am writing on behalf of the more than 26,000 members of the Federal Law Enforcement
Officers Association to advise you of our strong support for legislation you intend to introduce entitled the "Strengthening Homeland Security, Intelligence, and Essential Law Enforcement Departments (SHIELD) Act.” We appreciate your continued efforts on this legislation and steadfast support for our nation’s law enforcement officers.

As we have seen over the past two weeks with respect to funding for the Department of
Homeland Security (DHS), and on more than one occasion over the past several years, the risk of a shutdown due to the government reaching the statutory debt limit or because of a failure to enact annual appropriations is very real. There is an equally valid concern with the significant impact that the approaching shutdown at DHS could have on the ability of the government to carry out its core functions of preserving law and order and providing for the defense of our nation. Clearly the duties performed by the Department’s front-line law enforcement officers are too important to be interrupted because of a funding crisis. And should such a shutdown occur, we must ensure it has the least possible impact on our national security, and on the safety of those officers who continue to operate during the shutdown.

That is why the legislation that you have introduced is so necessary. Under the SHIELD Act, the President and federal agencies would be required to prioritize the payment of pay and allowances to members of the Armed Forces and federal law enforcement officers in the event of a gap in funding. In so doing, it recognizes the importance of our military and law enforcement in guaranteeing our safety and security, even in times of fiscal uncertainty.

On behalf of the membership of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, thank you
again for championing this important legislation and for your commitment to our nation’s federal law enforcement officers. Please do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of any further assistance.

Respectfully Yours,

Jon Adler
National President