Back the Blue Gives Arizona Voters the Chance to Stand with First Responders

Back the Blue
February 20, 2024

This November, voters will decide on a ballot measure designed to support Arizona first responders. The measure, known as the Back the Blue Act, strengthens criminal penalties for assaulting a first responder and increases survivor benefits to the families of first responders who are killed in the line of duty. The proposition was referred to the ballot by the Arizona State Legislature last year with strong bipartisan support.

“This is an important first step towards solving a big problem in our community,” said Tom Hatten, CEO of Mountainside Fitness and chairman of the Back the Blue campaign. “First responders, the people who keep us all safe, are under attack. This ballot measure gives us all a chance to show our support for first responders.”

The measure would levy a $20 fee on criminal convictions in the state, which would be directed towards a fund that would pay $250,000 to the families of fallen first responders within 30 days of a line of duty death. It also increases the severity of charges for violent assaults on first responders.

Supporters of the measure note that the protections in the proposition would be offered for all first responders - including police officers, firefighters, and paramedics. They say that rising rates of crime in the state and national stories of assaults on first responders have made the measure critically important in 2024.

“Most importantly, this changes the narrative to say ‘we stand with the cops, not the criminals’” Hatten stated. “We are asking everyone to come together and show their support of the people who protect our state.”

For more information or to find out how they can support local first responders, voters can head to