Monday, February 23, 2009

Call For Reappointment Of 9/11 Health Czar


Two members of Congress and other interested parties gathered at Ground Zero this morning to call for the reappointment of a 9/11 health czar to coordinate health care from those who remain ill from their exposure to the toxins emitted when the Twin Towers came down during the 2001 terrorist attacks.

The members of Congress, Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) were joined by New York state AFL-CIO president Denis Hughes, 9/11 first responders and residents of lower Manhattan to publicly ask President Obama to reappoint Dr. John Howard to the post.

Howard, then the director of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, was put in charge of federal 9/11 health programs in February 2006 by Michael Leavitt, then Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. But in July 2008, Howard was let go from both positions with little explanation and despite widespread praise of his job performance.

“The Bush administration made a good decision in appointing Dr. Howard and a typically bad move in letting him go," Maloney said.

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