Governor Cuomo: "I call on you to immediately take action to ensure full funding is available for all who need it. The American spirit is about taking care of those who answered the call, and it is our responsibility as a nation to support those who are suffering from the 9/11 attacks."
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today issued an open letter to the Senate and the House of Representatives calling on them to immediately increase funding for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. On Friday, the head of the fund announced dramatic cuts in future payments to survivors in the face of increasing claims and diminishing funding.
The full text of the letter is available below:
Dear Senators and Members of Congress,
In New York, we will never forget the pain and suffering wrought by the September 11 attacks, nor the heroes who stepped up that day and in the days, months, and years that followed in the service of others. And in New York, we have always banded together to support the victims of the September 11 attacks.
That's why we are especially concerned by the recent decision to drastically scale back federal payments to survivors still grappling with the health effects of the attacks.
The September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, fought for by the New York State Congressional delegation and first established in the wake of the attacks, was reopened in 2011 to provide for responders and individuals who experienced health problems related to 9/11. It is a testament to this nation's enduring commitment to those who were impacted by the attacks, and it should not be restricted or compromised.
The answer to diminishing funds is not to dilute payments to victims - it is to increase funding for all who need it and make the fund permanent. All are equally heroes to the nation, and all should be equally and fully funded.
I call on you to immediately take action to ensure full funding is available for all who need it. The American spirit is about taking care of those who answered the call, and it is our responsibility as a nation to support those who are suffering from the 9/11 attacks.
In New York, we will always stand with the victims of the 9/11 attacks. I will work with New York's delegation, the champions for this effort, to secure the funding that survivors deserve.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo