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Victim Compensation Fund

The Victim Compensation Fund is closing on October 3, 2016. We need your help now to extend it.

September 30, 2015 | Michael Barasch

VCF Awards Likely to Be Cut by 60% Unless You Take Action to Contact Congressmen Outside of the New York Area.

“I’m embarrassed. I’m embarrassed for our country.” That’s how Jon Stewart described the failure of Congress to extend health and compensation programs for 9/11 first responders and survivors – 33,000 of whom are suffering with health problems directly related to their exposure to toxins at ground zero.

We need you to call your Representative in The House and your Senators, and get them to co-sponsor the bipartisan legislation. Contact your Members of Congress by clicking here.

Stewart joined dozens of 9/11 first responders, as they walked the halls of Congress, imploring legislators to act on The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Reauthorization Act (H.R. 1786/S. 928). While there has been progress, we still need your help, especially those of you who live outside of the New York, New Jersey and the Connecticut area.

Unless you take action, at this point, you are facing likely cuts of up to 60% of your awards if the legislation is not passed and the VCF is not fully funded. Unless you take action, the Health Program will technically begin to shut down next week.

We are inching towards success. Today, 173 Members of The House and over 50 Senators have co-sponsored the legislation.

That’s a lot, but it’s not enough to ensure passage. Too many of their colleagues – and too many of the leaders – are still saying they “need time to study” the law. Or, they claim they support it, but won’t co-sponsor it. Or, they say that they “support doing something to help first responders, and they’ll get to it next year”.

There is an easy way that will make it possible for you to discover the names of your representatives, and learn where they stand on the efforts to extend the Act. Go to the website of the “Citizens for the Extension of the James Zadroga Act” and use its ‘Take Action Tool’. This will connect you to your Members of Congress.

Please call your representatives every day until they agree to join as a co-sponsor of the Bill. The vote should come to the floor of Congress this Fall. If they have already cosponsored the legislation, thank them. Cosponsoring the Zadroga Act, HR 1786 or S.928 is the only meaningful way for them to support permanent fully funded care and compensation, anything else is just rhetoric.

Together we can make sure that “Remembering 9/11” is more than just a campaign slogan.

Image: Jon Stewart with Michael Barasch


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