Cantwell, Murray Commemorate National Day of Remembrance to Honor Hanford Workers

SEATTLE, WA – Today, U.S. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Patty Murray (D-WA) issued the following joint statement to commemorate a National Day of Remembrance to honor the men and women who worked at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.  On September 28, 2010, the U.S. Senate unanimously approved the bipartisan resolution, co-sponsored by Cantwell and Murray, designating October 30, 2010, as a National Day of Remembrance for nuclear weapons program workers.

“This National Day of Remembrance commemorates the hundreds of thousands of men and women who have served this country in building its nuclear defense since World War II. Many of these workers had inadequate information on the long-term health risks posed by their work, risks that in some cases shortened their lives. This day honors those men and women for their service and sacrifice. Hanford is an important part of our nation’s history, and it is only right that we continue fighting for the health care access and benefits our nuclear weapons workers have earned and deserve. On this day of remembrance, we join with Washingtonians to commemorate the contribution, service and sacrifice of Hanford workers, and nuclear weapons workers across the country.”

Over the past six decades, many workers at the country’s nuclear facilities developed debilitating or fatal illnesses because of their exposure to radiation and other toxic substances. For years, Cantwell and Murray have worked to ensure that we appropriately compensate the Department of Energy workers who worked at these facilities and their families. They have also worked to improve the efficiency of the Energy Employees Occupational Insurance Compensation Program (EEOICP) to make it easier for workers and their families to obtain benefits.