Contact: Mónica Novoa
Communications Director, NYCOSH
Cell: (929) 366-5320
NYCOSH Launches “Health for Heroes” Campaign for 15th Anniversary of 9/11
The Campaign Kicks off with a Labor Outreach Drive in NYC in March
Led by Partner Central Labor Council
The New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH) today announced the launch of the Health for Heroes Campaign. This major outreach drive in the 15th anniversary year of the World Trade Center tragedy is aimed to locate workers who were 9/11 responders and survivors so they can access health coverage and monitoring through the World Trade Center Health Program and financial compensation through the Victim Compensation Fund. Presenting partner, the New York City Central Labor Council (AFL-CIO); and lead partner, the New York Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York, will kick off the campaign with a New York City labor drive throughout the month of March that will reach hundreds of labor affiliates throughout the city. The campaign will continue through September with NYCOSH providing outreach and enrollment assistance to organizations and individual workers.
NYCOSH’s Board Chair Lee Clarke stated, “With the Zadroga Act reauthorized, outreach and retention efforts on 9/11 healthcare and compensation continues to be necessary. As more responders and survivors fall ill from their exposure fifteen years after the disaster, it is crucial to connect as well as reconnect them to the specialized care they need.”
Labor partners commented on the need to reach their affiliates and members to ensure that all impacted responders and survivors benefit from the newly-renewed Zadroga Act.
“After 9/11, thousands of men and women from the construction trades risked their lives to rebuild this city, and for years we battled for their right to proper healthcare and financial compensation. Now that the James Zadroga Act is reauthorized, it is imperative for workers to seek the benefits they fought so hard to attain. We want to ensure that all our 9/11 responders and survivors are receiving the health care they deserve,” said Gary LaBarbera, president, Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York.
“Though nearly 15 years have passed, the physical and emotional effects of 9/11 remain for far too many first responders, construction workers, and others who helped rebuild our city. Through the Health for Heroes campaign, we are working to ensure that these hardworking men and women are aware of the specialized, no-cost care to which they are entitled under the Zadroga Act,” said Vincent Alvarez, President of the New York City Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO.
While there are currently over 70,000 responders and survivors enrolled in the WTC Health Program, it is estimated that 400,000 were exposed to the WTC-derived contaminants on 9/11 and the months following. Alarmingly, just under 18% of those who were exposed are currently enrolled.
Labor and community organizations who would like to sign-up to participate in the campaign by informing their members and the community about the availability of the health program can sign up here: http://bit.ly/1TJoFW8. NYCOSH will send participants an online toolkit to facilitate with outreach.
Help us spread the word:
We’ve partnered w @NYCOSH to connect more people to the #WorldTradeCenter Health
Program. Learn more: bit.ly/health4heroes #health4heroes
NYCOSH’s Role in World Trade Center Response
Beginning with the tragic events of September 11, 2001 and continuing to present day, NYCOSH has worked extensively on World Trade Center-related occupational and environmental health issues. Within days of 9/11, NYCOSH produced and distributed a series of fact sheets about respiratory protection and safe work and cleanup procedures. NYCOSH has been conducting outreach on the WTC Health Program to key groups of workers, including responders in the building trades, city and state agencies, and union and non-union workers comprising Spanish-speaking responders and survivors who have either lost touch with the program or have not been able to access outreach literature. NYCOSH is dedicated to reaching as many 9/11 responders and survivors as possible to inform them of the World Trade Center Health Program administered by NIOSH.