IMMEDIATE RELEASE September
VIETNAM VETERANS OF AMERICA COMMENDS USA
TODAY’S INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING ON TOXIC ENVIRONMENTS AND FEDERAL
WASHINGTON, DC - Vietnam
Veterans of America National President George C. Duggins praised the
investigative reporting front lined in USA Today.
Duggins said, “The excellent report, ‘Toxic Exposure Kept
Secret – Poisoned Workers and Poisoned Places,’ by Peter Eisler,
brought to light several familiar and profoundly disturbing issues.
His investigations into recently declassified government
documents concerning harmful exposure to radioactive and other toxic
materials by civilian employees reflect Cold War era tactics and
cover-ups. It is tragic
that these documents are now being declassified and released with
information that might have prolonged the life of Lewis Malcolm and
thousands of others referred to in the article.
The government has demonstrated the same reluctance in responding
to toxic exposures experienced by Vietnam and Gulf War veterans.”
Duggins continued, “We find it intolerable that
once again the government has withheld information that has shortened
the lives of those serving their country.
In this instance, the government appears to have been hiding from
culpability more so than protecting national security.
To the former employees that were kept ignorant of the health
hazards that they were exposed to, this must be a shocking revelation. Despite the government’s awareness of the potential adverse
health effects on these workers, no meaningful health care was provided,
or, scientific research conducted to determine the long term
consequences of these exposures.”
Duggins concluded, “VVA intends to aggressively
continue its efforts to research and identify toxic exposures in both
the Vietnam and Gulf War eras. We
applaud Mr.Eisler and USA Today for focusing on toxic exposures and the
lack of government response that has had such a devastating effect on
the lives of people in both the civilian and military sectors”
VVA’s point of contact for additional
information is Scott D. Campbell at (301) 585-4000, Ext. 158.
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Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) is the nation's
only congressionally chartered veterans service organization dedicated
solely to the needs of Vietnam-era veterans and their families. VVA's
founding principle is "Never again will one generation of veterans