Cold War Patriots, a community resource organization that is the nation’s strongest and most sustained voice advocating for worker benefits, has announced that the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health has approved a special exposure cohort (SEC) petition to expand benefits coverage for Y-12 workers. CWP is hosting free informational meetings in Tennessee on Feb. 5-8 (see schedule below) to share the new information and help workers determine if they are eligible for new monetary compensation or expanded health benefits under the new standards.
“This is exciting news for the thousands of workers who were previously denied or have never applied but could now qualify for monetary compensation up to $400,000 plus free health benefits,” says Tim Lerew, CWP Chairperson. “This SEC removes a number of hurdles for workers who have previously applied for a U.S. Department of Labor white medical benefits card and were denied or those who have an application pending.”
Lerew adds that those who already have a white card could be eligible for even more benefits under the expanded list of cancers the SEC covers.
Any employee of the U.S. Department of Energy, its predecessor agencies, and contractors and subcontractors who worked at the Y-12 Plant between Jan. 1, 1958, and Dec. 31, 1976, could be eligible for fast-tracked benefits.
“We encourage anyone who worked at the Y-12 Plant during this timeframe to come to our meeting to learn more about this expanded SEC. There are a few qualifications you must meet, and we will be educating attendees on those qualifications as well as letting them know what steps they need to take to apply,” says Lerew.
The SEC is a uniquely defined category of employees established under The Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA).
The SEC is comprised of classes of employees who have at least one of the 22 SEC cancers and have worked for a specific period of time at the Y-12 Plant. Claims compensated under the SEC do not have to go through the dose reconstruction process, as is required for other cancer claims covered by the EEOICPA.
The SEC will not be official until the Department of Energy’s formal process of two, 30-day waiting periods is over and the SEC has been signed by the Department of Health and Human Services. While it is estimated this will happen in mid-February, it is not clear how the government shutdown will affect the approval process.
Cold War Patriots’ Y-12 SEC Informational Meetings (10 a.m. or 1 p.m.)
• 10 a.m. morning meetings are for those who have their U.S. Department of Labor white medical benefits card, have an EEOICPA claim pending, or have been denied for benefits.
• The afternoon meetings, at 1 p.m., are for those who have never applied for benefits or those who previously believed they were not eligible for benefits.
Tuesday, Feb. 5
DoubleTree by Hilton
215 S. Illinois Ave.
Oak Ridge, Tenn.
Wednesday, Feb. 6
Noah’s Event Venue (0.2 miles southeast of Food City)
1200 Ladd Landing Blvd.
Thursday, Feb. 7
O’Connor Senior Center
611 Winona St.
Friday, Feb. 8
Beech Park Church
1085 E. Tri County Blvd.
Oliver Springs, Tenn.
The EEOICPA program is administered by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and offers monetary compensation and health benefits to workers who participated in the nuclear weapons program from 1942 until the present day and became sick because of radiation exposure. Learn more at dol.gov/owcp/energy.
Cold War Patriots (CWP) is a division of Professional Case Management (PCM), which provides specialized in-home healthcare services to nuclear weapons and uranium workers.
CWP is a community resource and advocacy organization and the nation’s strongest and most sustained voice to advocate for worker benefits.
CWP helps former nuclear weapons and uranium workers get the recognition, compensation and care they have earned. CWP, the first national organization to connect workers with benefits, does this work for free on behalf of its members.
Visit www.coldwarpatriots.org or call 888-903-8989 for more information.