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Pascrell Rejoices at House Making September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Permanent

Washington, July 12, 2019

U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-09) today celebrated the passage in the House of Representatives of H.R. 1327, the James Zadroga, Ray Pfeifer, and Luis Alvarez Permanent Authorization of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Act which would provide sustainable funding for 9/11 responders, survivors, and their families. Pascrell spoke strongly in support of the legislation in the well of the House.

“The 9/11 families and their loved ones have waited enough for Congress to act. At long last, this legislation fulfills the promise made to our brave first responders,” said Rep. Pascrell, a cosponsor of the legislation and an original cosponsor of the 9/11 fund. “In the aftermath of the worst tragedy in modern American history, our police, firefighters, and first responders rushed to Ground Zero and they remained there for weeks and months. Those heroes like my own constituent James Zadroga remained there to help save others without thinking of their own health. Those that have become desperately ill earned the unremitting support of their government and we must provide it now. We cannot wait one more day. I will not stop pushing until this legislation clears the Senate and is signed into law giving our heroes the peace of mind they have earned.”

Congress first passed the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Reauthorization Act in 2010. Pascrell was an original cosponsor of that legislation. Included in those receiving medical treatment under the law are over 3,900 incidences of 9/11-related cancer. The Zadroga Act reopened the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. The legislation has provided medical monitoring and treatment to the people exposed to harmful toxins and dust on the scene, including first responders and survivors from New Jersey.

Originally named for James Zadroga of North Arlington, a 34-year-old police officer who died from respiratory diseases contracted at Ground Zero, H.R. 3174 provides funding to the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Act through 2090. Det. Zadroga was just one of the many police officers, firefighters and emergency personnel who responded at the World Trade Center in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001 and were exposed to a massive, highly toxic plume of dust from the collapse of the Twin Towers.  In many cases, this exposure resulted in serious respiratory illnesses and related conditions.

A full clip of Rep. Pascrell’s floor statement in support of 9/11 responders and their families is available here.

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