A former New York City Fire Department chief is urging Congress to "never forget" the ailing 9/11 responders and survivors exposed to the toxic dust at Ground Zero who rely on two federal programs set to expire.
In an interview with "Newsmax Now" host John Bachman on the 14th anniversary of the terror attacks, former FDNY Chief Dan Daly said Congress' inability to address the health funding crisis is a tragic legacy for Sept. 11, 2001.
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"After 9/11, the words came out 'we will never forget,' always remember those who lost their lives and the sacrifice of the first responders," Daly said. "Well, it seems that not only have we forgotten, but we're turning our backs on the very people that made us so proud on those moments following 9/11 with the response of the emergency workers."
Almost 21,600 people received treatment through the World Trade Center Health Program over the past year – a program set to expire next year – while thousands of people who have applied for a payment from the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, a separate program, are facing the prospect there won't be enough to pay their awards, The Wall Street Journal reports.
"The way we felt after 9/11 as a country, everybody coming together and thinking with one mind and being positive and rebuilding our country and united, that seems to be dwarfed now by other issues, by political infighting," Daly said.
"But we can't forget. Let's remember the motto, 'We shall never forget.'"
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