Condominium panel unanimously passes 9/11 victims fund bill after Jon Stewart shaming

Jon Stewart lends his support to firefighters first responders and survivors of the September 11 terror attacks at a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington

Jon Stewart lends his support to firefighters first responders and survivors of the September 11 terror attacks at a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington

Jon Stewart, the popular former host of the late-night comedy programme The Daily Show, criticised members of Congress for not attending a hearing on renewing funding for a programme that provides healthcare to first responders who were sickened responding to the 11 September attacks in 2011.

More than 40,000 people have applied to the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, which covers illnesses potentially related to being at the World Trade Center site, the Pentagon or Shanksville, Pennsylvania, after the attacks. It now faces a vote by the full chamber.

Stewart and other speakers lamented the fact that almost 18 years after the attacks, first responders and their families still have no assurance the fund will not run out of money. "Thousands more poured in to continue to fight for their brothers and sisters", Stewart said in an impassioned testimony before the committee. "Eighteen years later, create yours".

They included Luis Alvarez, a retired NYPD detective who was once about to open up his 69th spherical of chemotherapy for liver most cancers. "It's there to give for our families after we won't". This normal VCF dispensed over $7bn (£6.2bn) to households of more than 2,880 folks that died and for 2,680 injured.

In 2006, Senator Bob Menendez of Unique Jersey and Representative Carolyn Maloney of Unique York co-subsidized a bill that in the end grew to vary into the James Zadroga 9/11 Successfully being and Compensation Act, which effectively re-activated the VCF. Beginning in 2010 when the resolution was held up in the Senate as part of a Republican-led filibuster, Stewart urged Congress to put aside partisanship to ensure that the act would pass.

Although it became within the starting build accredited to accept claims until October 2016, the fund's time limit became later extended until December 2020.

A total of $7.38bn used to be appropriated for this 2d iteration of the VCF.

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The build are we now?


Mr Bhattacharyya acknowledged the VCF purchased a document different of recent claims purchased in 2018, and is already no longer astray to surpass that number this year.

"In the two years after that, thru December 2018, practically 20,000 additional compensation kinds had been filed, with an additional 7,700 compensation kinds filed to this level in 2019". Previous bills handiest allowed victims of the scare attacks - alongside with basically the most significant responders - to file claims in 5-year classes.

The spike in claims has left the VCF in possibility of a huge funding shortfall. As a result, future payouts to 9/11 victims and their families would perchance be within the reduction of by as much as 70%.

The bill that passed the judiciary committee on Wednesday goals to make the VCF permanent and grant extra funding to the bill. A particular amount has now not yet been disbursed.

"More of these men and woman are going to get sick and they're going to die, and I'm awfully exhausted of hearing this is a 'New York issue, '" he said.

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