Friday, September 4, 2015

Roosevelt Island's Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney Urges Congress To Extend And Make Permanent Zadroga Act To Help Ailing 9/11 Responders & Survivors - 9/11 Tribute In Light Tested Last Night

Image From Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney Flickr Page
According to this September 3 press release from Roosevelt Island's Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney:
As the 14th Anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks approaches, ailing first responders and survivors today joined Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12), Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), Congressman Peter King (NY-2) and others to call on Congress to prevent the expiration of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act. Without congressional action, the World Trade Center Health Program and the Victim Compensation Fund will expire next year, leaving over 70,000 9/11 responders and survivors in all 50 states without the care and support they need to recover from 9/11 related illnesses.

“The heroes of 9/11 who fought the flames and inhaled the dust are being forced to wage a battle on two fronts: a fight to survive the illnesses related to their service at Ground Zero, and a fight on Capitol Hill to ensure the health and compensation they rely on don’t disappear,” said Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney. “They’ve endured chemotherapy, daily asthma attacks, permanent disabilities, post-traumatic stress, and other terrible illnesses. They live the consequences of 9/11 daily. It’s not enough to praise their heroism. It’s time for politicians in Washington to honor their sacrifice by permanently extending the Zadroga Act.”

“Fourteen years after the attacks of 9/11, we must remember the sacrifices of first responders and survivors and continue to support the World Trade Center Health Program and the Victim Compensation Fund,” said Congressman Jerrold Nadler. “The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act cannot be allowed to expire. It is not right that the victims and those who risked their own lives to save others on 9/11 may be forgotten if Congress does not act. I urge my colleagues to take action in order to ensure that these men and women continue to have access to the health coverage and compensation they so desperately need and deserve.”

“To this day too many of our 9/11 responders and survivors continue to fight serious illnesses, including more than 60 types of cancer caused by 9/11 toxins,” said Congressman Peter King. “This reauthorization is critical for these individuals and their families. We have come too far and we must continue to ensure that our 9/11 heroes receive the care they deserve.”...
... Dozens of 9/11 First Responders and Survivors participated in today’s press conference. Here are many of their stories:

Daniel Arrigo, Responder, Construction Worker
On September 15, Arrigo was trapped in an elevator and lost consciousness due to benzene poisoning. He continued to work nearly four months longer at Ground Zero until doctors told him he had to leave the site. Today he suffers from GERD, Obstructive Airway Disease, upper respiratory disease, spinal problems, diabetes, osteoporosis, pathological fracture and obstructive sleep apnea. In 2003, he had two strokes, and he has been forced to go to the emergency room more than 25 times.

Ronald Barber, Responder, FDNY (retired)
On September 11, Barber responded to Ground Zero and spent two days straight searching for bodies. Most of his battalion was killed in Tower 2. Today he suffers from asthma, cervical disk herniation, reflux, chronic bronchitis, sinusitis and sleep apnea. He is permanently disabled.

Lillian Bermudez, Survivor, Lower Manhattan Resident and Parent
Bermudez’s son Mitch was 12 years old on 9/11. Although he had no prior respiratory problems, two weeks after the attacks, he spent three days in the ICU at Bellevue. Doctors told Lillian that he could have died. He was diagnosed with severe asthma. Bermudez herself also suffers from WTC asthma and breathlessness on exertion.

Stephan Bruno, Responder, NYPD Detective, Sergeant (Retired)
On the day of the attacks, Bruno was stationed at the Brooklyn Army Terminal. He and fellow officers commandeered a ferry, loaded it with doctors and nurses and saw the first building fall as they crossed the water. In the next three months he performed rescue and recovery at Ground Zero, the Staten Island Landfill, and the morgue. Bruno has been diagnosed with cancer, pulmonary fibrosis, asthma, COPD, GERD and anemia. He is unable to run and play with his children, and loses his breath quickly when climbing a flight of stairs. He has difficulty performing even the simplest tasks.

Barbara Burnette, Responder, NYPD Detective (Retired)
“My career came to an end because of illnesses I developed from the time I served at the World Trade Center site. I have been diagnosed with interstitial lung disease, more specifically hypersensitivity pneumonitis with fibrosis in my lungs. I have failed the pulmonary function tests that doctors have given me. The inflammation in my lungs interferes with my breathing and destroys the tissues that get oxygen to my blood. My lungs are permanently scarred. I cannot move around my home without wheezing or gasping for breath. I take large doses of steroids that add to my weight. I start each morning connecting to a nebulizer and inhaling multiple doses of medications. I am told I will eventually need a lung transplant.” Detective Burnette testified before Congress in June before the House Energy and Commerce Committee....
More here.

The 9/11 Tribute In Light was tested last night.