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City’s Highest Civic Honor Awarded to Advocates for 9/11 Illness Victims

After years of worry that the federal 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund might expire, New Yorkers and people from around the country celebrated the law that authorized its extension through the year 2090. The new law and its updated, strengthened provisions would not have come without the efforts of many dedicated advocates, some of whom are sadly no longer with us.

To recognize 16 key supporters of the bill, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio awarded them the Bronze Medallion — the city’s highest civic honor — in a December ceremony held at the Beacon Theater. Recipients included:

  • First responders — Family members accepted awards in behalf of deceased first responders James Zadroga, Ray Pfeifer, Luis Alvarez and Deborah Reeve, victims of 9/11 illness who battled through their excruciating pain and deteriorating physical condition to help thousands of others facing similar circumstances.
  • Victim advocates — Lila Nordstrom, who was in the shadow of the Twin Towers as a Stuyvesant High School senior when the attacks occurred, was recognized for her work as the founder of StuyHealth, which focuses on obtaining healthcare for younger people affected by post-9/11 illnesses. Another medallion went to John Feal, whose Feal Good Foundation assists emergency personnel in this area and around the United States.
  • Political activists — Comedian and television host Jon Stewart, one of the most visible proponents of the victim fund’s reauthorization, was among the New Yorkers honored during the tribute.

While the presentation justly praised those whose work will help thousands of victims and their families, it’s important to remember that more remains to be done. Only a fraction of the 400,000 people potentially exposed to toxins emanating from Ground Zero have sought related medical treatment or monitoring. Now that the VCF has been extended, it’s time to make sure those in need take advantage of the program.

Barasch & McGarry has long been a leader in the battle to secure proper compensation for clients through the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund and other measures. To make an appointment for a free consultation regarding your options if you might have been exposed to toxins near the Ground Zero site, please call 888-351-9421 or contact us online.

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  • "Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson handled everything professionally and with patience. They always had time to answer all my questions and did what they promised. Thanks esp to Brian Calamaris Lee London, and Mariya Atanasova. Thank you." - William Collins, FDNY

  • "If I could give them six stars I would...don't even bother talking to anyone else concerning 9/11. The whole team worked night and day to deliver an outstanding settlement. They are honest, hard working and extremely professional. Just make the one phone call and let them do the rest." - Les Margulis, resident in the exposure zone

  • "I had a very good experience with Michael and Mariya. They made the process stress free. I would recommend this firm to anyone seeking assistance with 9/11 related illnesses." - JE Kirwan, worked in the exposure zone

  • "The people at this firm were just great. They were concern with making sure I was taken care of in every way possible. When I was given an award Mr. Barasch didn't think it was a fair amount and appealed the decision which got me a larger award. I am very satisfied with everything they did for me in the past and are willing to do for me and my family in the future." - Bob Wiecezak, FDNY-Retired

  • "Excellent law firm. Lee London and his staff were very responsive and always followed up with phone calls or emails. This firm is a strong example of what caring and personable lawyers are all about." - Letitia Egan, wife of client, volunteer in the exposure zone

  • Deadline Extended to Register for Compensation

    There is still time to apply for significant compensation if you have been diagnosed with any of the 68 cancers that doctors at the WTC Health Program (WTCHP) have linked to the WTC toxic dust. The deadline to apply to the Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) is two years from the date that a cancer has been certified by the WTC Health Program — or any other governmental agency. The two-year period to register doesn’t start on the day of a cancer diagnosis. Rather, it starts only when a cancer survivor is made aware their cancer was linked to exposure to the WTC toxins.

    For those who died from their WTC-linked cancers, the two-year period for their family to register starts on the day of the death of the WTC victim.

    Register For Compensation

Please help spread the word about the strict two-year deadline to register a claim

Many people have tried to complete the VCF application on their own, only to learn that it requires answers to hundreds of questions and many documents to download. It would be our pleasure to help you complete the process in order to ensure that you receive the compensation that you are entitled to. Please call us for a free consultation.

Let a knowledgeable attorney help you figure it out

A cancer diagnosis can be terrifying. You undoubtedly have questions about your disease and how you will pay for treatment. Lawyers at Barasch & McGarry ensure you understand the complex requirements and help devise the best strategies for obtaining compensation and appropriate medical care under the Zadroga Act. Contact our law firm online or call 888-351-9421. The initial consultation is free, so it costs you nothing to find out whether a lawyer can help.
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