Please contact your congressperson!

The Volunteer Responder Incentive Protection Act (VRIPA) exempts property tax benefits and up to $600 per year in other incentives that volunteer fire and EMS personnel receive from being subject to federal income tax and reporting/withholding. VRIPA is currently set to expire at the end of 2020, but legislation in the U.S. House and Senate (H.R. 1241/S. 1210) would extend it permanently. Contact your U.S. Representative and Senators and tell them to pass a VRIPA extension before the end of 2020!

The Take Action link below will take you to the contact information for your congressperson in your specific district.


Take Action






AN ACT to create 299.48 of the statutes; relating to regulating fire fighting foam that contains certain contaminants and granting rule−making authority. 








Operation Clear Track 2020 Materials for Sharing

Did you know that every three hours in the United States, a person or vehicle is hit by a train? Our department/agency supports an annual effort to keep our communities and citizens safe around railroad tracks and trains.  


September 21-27 is Rail Safety Week in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. To mark the event, we support “Operation Clear Track,” the largest single railroad safety program in the country, hosted by Amtrak and Operation Lifesaver Inc.  

Due to COVID-19, we will not be holding in-person rail safety activities. Instead, we invite you to join our virtual “Operation Clear Track” effort to share this critical safety message. We are sharing safety videos, social media posts, and other materials reminding our citizens about the dangers of trespassing on railroad property and failing to obey the laws at railroad crossings. Please share them online with your friends and family.   

Without question, the pandemic has seriously impacted our personal and professional lives. However, railroad-related deaths and injuries continue to occur in our communities. We appreciate your help in spreading the word, to prevent these incidents from ever impacting our friends and loved ones. More information on Rail Safety Week is available at



Download the Operation Clear Track Pocket Card




Governor Evers Announces Emergency Order #22

Related to Certain Timelines Established by the Department of Safety and Professional Services


In part, this order addressed the items below.  

Admin. Rule:   Wis. Admin. Code § SPS 314.01(13)(b)3.

Description of Rule:   Fire prevention inspections.

Status:  Suspended with companion order.

Companion Order:  Any postponed inspections must be made up and prioritized after the conclusion of the public health emergency.


Admin. Rule:  Wis. Admin. Code § SPS 314.01(13)(c)

Description of Rule:  Public fire education training.

Status:  Suspended with companion order.

Companion Order:  Public fire education services may be postponed during the public health emergency. Fire Departments should continue to provide online and telephone Fire Prevention Services, Support, and Resources, if available.


Admin. Rule:  Wis. Admin. Code § SPS 314.01(14)(c)

Description of Rule:   Self-certification for fire department dues.

Status:  Suspended with companion order.


Companion Order:  Self-certifications for 2019 may be received until June 1, 2020.

You can read the complete order here




Announcing the Resilient Wisconsin Initiative


Today (4-3-2020), Governor Evers and DHS Secretary-designee Andrea Palm announced the Resilient Wisconsin initiative. With the stressors and health challenges inherent in the COVID-19 pandemic, the time is now to provide Wisconsinites with tools to build resiliency for those affected by trauma, toxic stress, and other mental and behavioral health challenges.


Finding healthy ways to cope and stay connected is more important than ever. This is what Resilient Wisconsin offers - tools to encourage self-care, maintain social connections, and reduce stress. When we utilize these tools, we help build a healthier Wisconsin for all. Here are a few steps you can take today. 


  • Get the three goods. That's good-for-you foods, a good night's sleep, and a good amount of exercise every day.  *   Stay connected to your support system. Reach out to family and friends, colleagues, and community groups in whatever way you can-calls, texts, video chats, and more.
  • Spend time away from focusing on COVID-19. Don't let the pandemic take over what you read, watch, or talk about. And don't be afraid to ask friends and family to talk about something else. Reduce anxiety by reducing your risk. Stay safer at home. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze. Stay at least 6 feet apart while running essential errands at the store, pharmacy, or gas station. Knowing you're doing everything you can to stay healthy can help you worry less.
  • Check-in with yourself. Everyone's reaction to stress is different. Difficulty concentrating or sleeping, irritability, fatigue, and even stomachaches can be normal. But if you find you are overwhelmed or having thoughts of self-harm or suicide, reach out for help right away. Text HOPELINE to 741741 or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.


We are in a stressful time for Wisconsin, and we recognize that stress is heightened for our first responders and medical professionals on the front lines, parents and caregivers, people living with mental and behavioral health concerns, and mental and behavioral health providers. This is why Resilient Wisconsin also provides tools, resources, and trauma-informed practices specific to these communities.


Staying Safer at Home is important, but we know it is not easy. Resilient Wisconsin offers us a way forward as we all work towards a healthier Wisconsin. For more information, please visit Resilient Wisconsin

and follow DHS on 





Remember, it is OK to ask for help, and it builds resilience to reach out and connect. Together, and with Resilient Wisconsin, we will find ways to stay strong and support each other. We are committed to building a healthier and more resilient Wisconsin.


Professionals: Sign up for the Resilient Wisconsin Trauma-Informed News & Notes monthly newsletter email to get updates on trauma-related research, resources, and training opportunities here. If you have a question, email the Department of Health Services.