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Personal Injury9/11 InjuriesZadroga Act

Victims, Volunteers Still Waiting on Much-Needed Assistance

October 9, 2014 | Michael Barasch

It’s tough to believe, but 13 years later there are still people who were significantly impacted by the terrorist attacks of 9/11 who are still waiting to receive the assistance they desperately need. 

Consider the case of Jaime Hazan, a volunteer and first responder who assisted in the immediate aftermath of the attacks in September 2001. Not until four years after his work at Ground Zero did Hazan begin noticing symptoms of respiratory problems due to prolonged exposure to toxins at the site. These toxins changed his life forever and, according to him, destroyed his livelihood. 

There are thousands of Americans who still suffer from illnesses and injuries they acquired while assisting victims on and after 9/11. In fact, more than 30,000 victims or first responders still have at least one injury or illness from which they continue to suffer. More than 130 police officers and firefighters have died from complications related to illnesses caused by exposure to toxins in the air near Ground Zero. 

Victims of these illnesses and injuries have the ability to seek compensation through the September 11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF), but nearly half (44 percent) of the claims are still pending. There is an enormous backlog of people seeking the compensation they need for the injuries and illnesses they suffered, and many of these people were heroic in their response. 

Although there are member of Congress and other public officials seeking to extend the time the VCF would remain active through a new bill, it’s clear that many people are still going without the treatment they need because they simply have had to wait far too long. It’s true that no one in our country have forgotten the victims of the attacks, but it’s easy to forget that many of these people are still facing serious health issues and need immediate help. 

If you are still suffering from chronic health problems as a result of the 9/11 attacks, meet with a skilled and compassionate New York City personal injury lawyer at Barasch & McGarry.

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