The deadline to register for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) is Tuesday, October 14, 2014 for those who were diagnosed with an eligible cancer on or before October 12, 2012. Compensation from the fund applies to rescue workers who worked at the World Trade Center, as well as the Pentagon and Shankesville, PA crash sites.
Claimants who were diagnosed with an illness listed as eligible for compensation by the VCF have two years from date of diagnosis to register. The Special Master is unable extend the deadline. Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney and Congressman Jerrold Nadler held recent press conference with first responders, survivors, community leaders and advocates to emphasize the importance of the impending deadline.
The VCF was reopened for another 5 years when the Zadroga Act was passed in 2010. The WTC Health Program, which monitors and treats 9/11 survivors, was also created through the Zadroga Act. Lawmakers are pushing to reauthorize the bill, thereby keeping these programs open for another 25 years. Exposure to toxins during 9/11 has been linked with a number of illnesses, including for 60 types of cancer.
“Our city and our workforce remain forever changed by the events of September 11th . Unfortunately, too many of our hardworking first responders are still dealing with the terrible health effects brought on by their exposure to poisonous toxins during rescue and recovery efforts. The funding is available to help the working men and women who sacrificed so much helping others, but it is imperative that they register with the September 11th Victims Compensation Fund to receive the benefits they so desperately need and deserve.” said Vincent Alvarez, President of the New York City Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO.
“Medical data that the FDNY maintained on every New York City Firefighter pre-9/11 gave doctors a conclusive scientific baseline on the negative health impact the response and operations at the World Trade Center site had on our members. Since then New York City Firefighters have been getting sick and dying in record numbers as a result of cancers and other diseases caused by breathing the toxic air at the World Trade Center site. Victims of 9/11 that have been diagnosed with cancer have already suffered enough. Additional suffering should not take place because they miss the upcoming deadline to register for the Victims Compensation Fund. We urge all 9/11 cancer victims to register by this important deadline.” said Jim Slevin, Vice President of the Uniformed Firefighters Association.