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Hanford Workers Approved for Cancer Compensation

Cathy Duchamp
04/09/2008

Thousands of people who got cancer after working at the Hanford nuclear site in south–central Washington may automatically qualify for $150,000 in federal compensation. Advisors for the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health yesterday (Tuesday) expanded the pool of eligible workers. We get more from KUOW correspondent Cathy Duchamp.

TRANSCRIPT

FEDERAL WORKPLACE HEALTH ADVISORS SAY THERE'S NOT ENOUGH DATA TO RULE OUT RADIATION RELATED CANCER IN PEOPLE WHO WORKED IN KEY PARTS OF THE HANFORD SITE FROM THE MID 1940s TO THE LATE 1960s. ROSEMARY HOYT'S FATHER WAS ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE. THE HANFORD CARPENTER GOT COLON CANCER AND DIED WHEN HE WAS 47. HOYT SAYS WORKERS LIKE HER FATHER WERE VICTIMS OF THE COLD WAR.

HOYT: "These men served their country. They were extremely patriotic. They knew we were in extremely dire circumstances. And they worked as hard as they could in very dangerous conditions."

HOYT SAYS THE $150,000 COMPENSATION IS VALIDATION OF SERVICE. HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES SECRETARY MIKE LEAVITT MUST STILL APPROVE THE PLAN. PLUTONIUM PRODUCTION AT HANFORD PEAKED IN THE 1960s, DURING THE COLD WAR. IT'S NOW THE MOST POLLUTED NUCLEAR WASTE SITE IN THE NATION. I'M CATHY DUCHAMP REPORTING.

© Copyright 2008, KUOW

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