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Outrage Over 9/11 Museum Exhibit that Undermines Health Problems

February 2, 2015 | Michael Barasch

The 9/11 Museum in New York City opened this past year and it is already causing outrage among the public. The many devastating effects of 9/11 include the health problems that first responders and others who were present on and in the days following the attacks have experienced. These health problems include chronic and terminal diseases, such as cancer. While this connection has been widely acknowledged by the federal government and through legislation and victim compensation relief, one of the exhibits at the 9/11 Museum suggests that the connection is not certain.

The panels of the “After 9/11” exhibit at the museum explore the after-effects of the attacks. Some of these panels suggest that the health issues suffered by workers and others near Ground Zero have not been definitively linked to the toxic dust present after the attacks. This suggestion has offended many individuals who continue to be plagued by health problems, as well as the families of first responders who continue to meet untimely deaths due to these ailments. To suggest that the link is uncertain is to undermine the suffering that the attacks caused.

Much of the criticism surrounds the wording at the exhibit that presents the link and the causation as tenuous rather than definitive. For instance, one panel says that the Zadroga Act, which was enacted to provide compensation for victims, was created “for those with health conditions claimed to be related to the World Trade Center Disaster.”

Critics take issue with the word “claimed,” as it implies that these health issues were not definitely related to the disaster. Further, another panels reports that officials “were criticized for allegedly not providing timely and accurate information about air quality in Lower Manhattan.” In fact, the air quality was dangerous and the EPA’s Inspector General found that the officials misled the public, which led to massive litigation. The word “allegedly” suggests, again, that this is in question.

Thousands have suffered health problems in the wake of 9/11, and many are eligible to receive compensation. To learn more, speak with a dedicated 9/11 injury lawyer at Barasch, McGarry Salzman & Penson in New York today.

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