Compensation for 9/11 victims could become permanent now that senators have proposed a bill to permanently reauthorize and fund the Victims Compensation Fund.
Many people present at or around Ground Zero during and after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 continue to feel the repercussions of the tragedy. During the attacks, harmful chemicals and toxins were released into the air and inhaled by people in lower Manhattan during and in the months following the attacks.
Though experts first determined that the air at Ground Zero was safe to breathe, this has turned out to be far from the case. Now, it is known that many dangerous toxins were released, and, in the months, years, and decades following people have reportedly developed a range of cancers and illnesses as a result. Almost two decades after the attacks, more and more people are developing 9/11-related illnesses.
Almost 10,000 people have been diagnosed with cancer linked to their exposure to toxins present at the September 11 terrorist attacks, and that number is only expected to increase, according to experts.
Victims have been able to turn to the Victims Compensation Fund and other funds set up for those affected by the terrorist attacks. After the attacks, Congress set up a $7 billion fund to help victims recover from the affects of the attacks. This fund is set to expire in 2020. This fund was supposed to expire much earlier, but as it was discovered that people were still developing 9/11-related conditions, that date was extended.
Now, the cut off date is approaching, and experts only expect the number of people who develop 9/11-related cancer and other conditions to continue to rise. Additionally, the funds may run out before 2020 as more and more people file claims.
Now, some members of Congress argue that compensation for 9/11 victims should be permanent. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York has co-sponsored the Zadroga Act, which would create a World Trade Center Healthcare Program that would offer permanent healthcare assistance to people who are living with 9/11-related illnesses.
Gillibrand is joined by New York senator Charles Schumer and Republican senator Cory Gardner of Colorado in their support for making the assistance to 9/11 victims permanent. On the proposed program, Gillibrand said that “[t]housands of firefighters, police officers, federal and local law enforcement officers, medical workers, construction workers, and other heroes risked their lives for us after we were attacked on 9/11. We cannot simply turn our backs on our 9/11 heroes and let the victim compensation fund expire,” according to The Guardian.
House representative Democrats Jerrold Nadler and Carolyn Maloney of New York City and Republican Pete King of Long Island are also sponsoring the bill to make the compensation for 9/11 victims permanent.
Noting that the problem of 9/11 related diseases is far from over, Nadler stated that there are many people “who may not yet know they are sick,” but may need assistance in the future.
Navigating the complex and burdensome paperwork and strict deadlines to participate in the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund can be difficult. An experienced 9/11 Victim Fund attorney can help and ensure you get the maximum compensation available.
If you were present near Ground Zero, generally considered to be Lower Manhattan below Canal Street, between September 11, 2001 and May 31, 2002, and were diagnosed with cancer 4 years or more after exposure (or 1 year or more for blood and bone cancers), you may qualify for compensation.
Submit your information now for a free, no-obligation review of your potential 9/11 cancer fund claim.