www.safetyandhealthmagazine.com/articles/9-11-workers-opt-in-for-court-settlement-2

9/11 workers opt-in for court settlement

December 2, 2010

More than 10,000 people suing New York City and other entities for illnesses stemming from work at the site of the 9/11 terrorist attacks have signed on to a settlement agreement that could be worth at least $700 million.

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York approved the settlement in June, and on Nov. 19 announced enough plaintiffs opted in to meet the 95 percent threshold necessary for the settlement to move forward.

Under the agreement, workers who are ill or fear they will become ill from their work at the World Trade Center site could receive -- if they qualify -- a portion of the settlement amount based on the severity of their illness.

Some people have suggested the settlement does not go far enough, and several members of Congress are working to pass the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act (H.R. 847). The bill would establish first responder and community treatment and monitoring programs to help those affected by exposure to toxic air and debris after the attacks. It passed in the House in September, and awaits a vote in the Senate as of deadline.