House panel unanimously passes 9/11 victims fund bill a day after Jon Stewart speech
After an emotional speech made by Jon Stewart made was widely circulated, in which he advocated for healthcare for 9/11 first responders, the bill that has permanently authorized the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund has been passed out of the House Judiciary Committee unanimously.
Only Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and four subcommittee members were present for the testimony from several 9/11 first responders, as per the New York Post.
This outraged Stewart, who stated: It’s an embarrassment to the country and a stain on the institution and you should be ashamed of yourselves, for those who aren’t here, but you won’t be because accountability doesn’t appear to be something that occurs in this chamber."
The bill needs to be scored by the Congressional Budget Office before it can be voted in the House. However, it is still expected to pass, as the legislation has 313 bipartisan co-sponsors. The White House has not responded on requests for comment President Trump's stance on the issue.
Nadler stated: "That five-year reauthorization was not nearly enough. People are still getting sick as diseases like cancer emerge after long latency periods. Those already sick are getting sicker, and tragically, many are dying and have died."
As a result of the collapse of the World Trade Centre, thousands of tons of toxic debris were spread across Lower Manhattan, much of which was highly carcinogenic and harmful. A 2011 report from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health estimates that approximately 18,000 people were affected by toxic dust on September 11, 2001.