|For Immediate Release||December 5, 2000|
|Media Contact:||Bill Taylor (803) 725-2889|
Aiken, SC - The Department of Energy's (DOE) Assistant Secretary for Environment, Safety and Health, Dr. David Michaels, will hold a public meeting to discuss the new Federal compensation program for DOE contract employees such as Savannah River Site workers who have work related illnesses. The meeting will be held Thursday, December 7, at the Aiken Technical College's Amphitheater, behind the 700-800 Building, on Highways 1 and 78, starting at 7:00 p.m.
All current, former, and retired workers and their families, and community residents are invited to attend and share questions or concerns regarding this new program or work-related illnesses and experiences with workers' compensation programs at Savannah River Site.
Last month, the President signed into law the Energy Employee Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act of 2000. The Act gives DOE contract workers with beryllium-related disease, radiation-related cancers, and silicosis access to financial compensation and health care coverage. The law also establishes a DOE Office of Advocacy to assist workers with occupational illness in assisting affected workers in applying in with their respective state for worker's compensation benefits.
Dr. Michaels oversees health and safety concerns for nuclear weapons workers as part of his responsibilities at the Department of Energy. He is an epidemiologist and professor on leave from the Medical School of The City University of New York.