FOS11 Newsletter, Volume #5, Issue #12December 20, 2006

Welcome | Issues Update | Upcoming Events | Resources | Contact Us | Donate

Families of September 11 is now operating as the For Action Initiative. The web pages on this site are available for informational purposes only. Please visit us at www.foractioninitiative.org.

Welcome

The staff and Board of Directors of Families of September 11 (FOS11) extends warm wishes to you and your loved ones this holiday season.  We hope that we have served you well this past year and look forward to continuing our work together in the New Year.  The holidays can be a wonderful as well as challenging time.  We hope that you will take the opportunity to connect with family and friends, and take time to care for yourself.  Our thoughts are with those lost on 9/11 and the thousands who were impacted that day.  We hope that you find strength in yourselves and from those around you who provide positive influences of love and support.   

Since the holidays are so connected with family traditions and rituals, many people continue to struggle with reminders that bring them back to their loss and grief.  Brian Richardson, LSCW, and FOS11 Staff Member, offers strategies for coping with the holidays in his article, Coping Through the Holidays

Issues Update

Ground Zero Update

Press Release from Mayor Bloomberg
Mayor Bloomberg, the Chairman of the WTC Memorial Foundation, prepared a press release highlighting some of the progress made with the WTC Memorial.  This includes information about fundraising, the hiring of a new Executive Vice President of Development, and the selected design concept for arrangement of victims’ names.  To read this press release click here

We understand that the process of memorializing at Ground Zero has been long and difficult, and that we each have personal opinions about this very public structure.  We recognize that there may not be comfort or agreement with all the decisions that have been made.  With that in mind, FOS11 is committed to providing information, resources and community as we continue on the path of rebuilding.

In response to FOS11 member concerns about both the recent discovery of remains at Ground Zero and the news about newly identified victims from American Airlines Flight 11, we have been in contact with the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner and want to share information we learned from them with you. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner’s explained that there are no new protocols for the recovery of remains.  Family members do not have to resubmit DNA and the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner will continue to be the initial point of contact for families.  If you have any questions, please contact the OCME’s WTC Unit at (212) 447-7884. 

FOS11 understands that this news will continue to be unsettling for family members and is in constant contact with the Mayor’s Community Assistance Unit (CAU).  Please contact us directly at info@familiesofseptember11.org if we can be of assistance.  Families can also reach CAU directly by contacting Ada Rehnberg-Campos at 212-788-7410 or 212-788-7754 (fax). 

EPA to Test Indoor Spaces in Lower Manhattan
In the final phase of its response to the events of September 11, 2001, EPA has announced the beginning of a program to test indoor spaces in Lower Manhattan. The program, which covers the area south of Canal Street and west of Allen and Pike Streets, will allow residents and building owners to have the air and dust in their units tested for four contaminants associated with dust from the collapse of the World Trade Center.

If analysis of dust and air samples finds elevated levels of any of four contaminants of concern – asbestos, man-made vitreous fibers such as fiberglass, lead, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons – the contaminants will be cleaned up. Under the program announced today, local residents and owners of commercial or residential buildings closest to Ground Zero will receive priority for testing and cleaning if registration for the program is high. The program is limited to $7 million provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The number of residential and commercials spaces that will be addressed under the program will depend upon a number of factors, including the square footage of the units participating.

Registration for the program will begin mid-January and run for two months.  For more information , visit http://www.epa.gov/wtc/testandclean or contact the Indoor Air Residential Assistance Program at (212) 637-3435.

Demolition of Deutsche Bank Building Begins
Earlier this month preparations were made to begin the demolition work at the Deutsche Bank building.  Rebuilding officials have declared that the building is now free of remains.  FOS11 will continue to update you on the progress of this demolition.

Update on the Implementation of the 9/11 Commission Recommendations
As many of you may have heard, Speaker-Elect Pelosi promised to implement the remaining 9/11 Commission recommendations as part of her campaign pledges.  We thank her for taking on this important issue, and look forward to working with her to ensure these critical steps are finally enacted, more than 2 and a half years since the final 9/11 Commission report was released.
Families of September 11 will continue to provide you information about upcoming legislation as it becomes available.  If you would like to express your support for the implementation of the outstanding 9/11 Commission recommendations, might we suggest that you call Speaker-Elect Pelosi or Senate Majority Leader Reid (see contact information below) to let them know how you feel.  Some ideas you might share with them and their staff include:

  • You are excited that they are committed to implementing all aspects of the 9/11 Commission’s recommendations.  We have waited far too long for those important recommendations to be implemented, and their dedication to making the country safer and more secure is something to be lauded.
  • One of the most important recommendations that has not been implemented is that of congressional reform.  As we have overhauled the intelligence community, the transportation community and others in the wake of 9/11, so too must we heed the 9/11 Commission’s recommendation to overhaul Congress and “strengthen congressional oversight of intelligence and homeland security”.
  • Let Congress’ future leaders know that we plan to pay attention and hold them to their word.  They campaigned on a promise to implement the 9/11 Commission recommendations, and for that, we are grateful.  Now the time to act, and to legislate and provide oversight, has come, and we plan to work with them to make sure this happens.

A simple phone call, letter or even an email will make a big difference.  Please take 5 minutes to call and let them know how important this issue is to you.
In this holiday season, grief and pain can seem even more overwhelming.  Families of September 11 will continue to provide you with information, and community.  While there are no words that can bring comfort, there is something reassuring to knowing that there is something you can do, and that you are not alone.

Contact Information:
Speaker-Elect Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)
202-225-0100
Sf.nancy@mail.house.gov
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV)
202-224-5556
http://reid.senategov/contact/email_form.cfm (this is a form, since there is no public email address)

FOS11 continues to make progress to prevent nuclear terrorism
Families of September 11 is proud of the progress being made through our collaboration with the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI).  Together, we have held screenings of the nuclear terrorism docudrama “Last Best Chance” and panel discussions about how ordinary citizens can help prevent nuclear terrorism at universities (Harvard, Georgetown, University of Pittsburgh, London School of Economics), with members of Congress and with organizations across the country.  If you are interested in holding a screening in your community, please visit the www.saferworld.org website.

FOS11 Board Member, Don Goodrich, and wife, Sally Goodrich, featured in Our Voices Together for work in Afghanistan
Don and Sally Goodrich are featured in the Our Voices Together newsletter this month to highlight the work they have done in Afghanistan through the Peter M. Goodrich Memorial Foundation, established in honor of their son Peter who was killed on September 11th.  This foundation works primarily in the Pashtun provinces of Afghanistan, and supports education and addressing the fundamental needs of fragile populations.  The work they have been able to accomplish is impressive - be sure to visit the foundation website to learn more.  To visit the Our Voices Together website, click here. Don sits on the Board of Directors for Families of September 11th.  Sally Goodrich sits on the Advisory Board for Our Voices Together. 

Upcoming release of Reign over Me
A new movie starring Adam Sandler is scheduled to come out in March, 2007.  In the movie, he plays a 9/11 widower who loses his wife and three daughters in AA11.  The movie deals with his grief, but does not focus on 9/11 and is not being promoted as a 9/11 movie.  The trailer, which has been released and is being shown before The Pursuit of Happyness, among other movies, does not mention the 9/11 connection to the movie.  We understand this may be difficult for some to see, and will remain in contact with the studio producers to ensure information is distributed to families as soon as possible to avoid any surprises about the movie.


Release of World Trade Center movie on DVD
On December 12th, Paramount Pictures released “World Trade Center” on DVD.  TV ads will run primarily during morning/daytime TV and some prime time spots as well.  Print ads will also run in newspapers and a few magazines in mid-late December and early January.  There will be no outdoor advertising, but there will be displays in video stores.  The content of the print and television ads will be similar to the trailers and ads that were released earlier this year, but will be more geared toward the critical acclaim that the film received. 
 
The release of the DVD will generate some print coverage in December and January issues, as well as broadcast exposure on local NY stations during entertainment and news programs and national entertainment programs surrounding the release date of December 12th. 
 
If you have questions about the release of this film, contact Jennifer Brown at jbrown@a2bllc.com
 

Resolve to be Ready in 2007
On December 31, 2006 nearly half of you will make at least one New Year’s resolution as you look toward the New Year.  Today, FOS11 is encouraging all of our members to make a resolution that is both important and easy to keep, preparing for emergencies. 

In a recent national survey conducted by The Ad Council, 91 percent of Americans agreed that taking some simple steps to prepare could help protect themselves and their families in the event of an emergency.  However, only 55 percent had taken at least one of the three steps recommended by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Ready Campaign, including getting an emergency supply kit, making a family emergency plan, and being informed about the different types of emergencies that could occur and their appropriate responses.

Therefore, we are encouraging you to visit www.ready.gov or call 1-800-BE-READY to learn how to prepare your families, homes and businesses for all types of emergencies including natural disasters and potential terrorist attacks.  Free materials, including family emergency plan templates and sample business continuity plans, are available through these resources.  These materials will provide you with tools to make a New Year’s resolution that will bring you a peace of mind.  
We encourage you to “Resolve to be Ready” in 2007.

Upcoming Events

FOS11 Calendar
Go to the FOS11 calendar for more events.

FOS11 Chat Program Online Community Support Group
Tonight, December 20th, 8pm-9pm EDT
The holidays are upon us.  We are dealing with crowds, family, friends, financial strains, cooking, eating, and are likely to experience the ups and downs of the holiday season.  This can be both a happy and sad time for remembering times with those that were lost on 9/11/01.  This chat will give you an opportunity to explore some of these mixed feelings, and also share with your peers, successful strategies for managing through the season.  The chat will be held Tonight, Wednesday, December 20th from 8-9pm.  To enroll click on the link below.

Enroll Now:
https://www.familiesofseptember11.org/chat2/membership_form.asp?chatID=122006

This online chat session will provide 9/11 victims' families, survivors, first responders, and others affected by the attacks at the Pentagon, the World Trade Center, and Shanksville the opportunity to discuss issues and topics of importance in a safe, supportive environment. As a reminder, all participants must be FOS11 members (please see below on how to register as a member - membership is free). Dr. Donna Gaffney, a licensed mental health professional and noted trauma specialist, will facilitate the chat.

9/11 Interfaith Remembrance Service at St. Paul’s Chapel
December 16, 2006, 12:30pm
To learn more about this service click here.  This is open to families, survivors, rescuers, family and friends.  You must RSVP by email as instructed at the website.

Health Seminars Regarding Post 9/11 Health and Environmental Issues at September Space
Thursday, January 11, 2007 from 6-8pm

Dr. Perera from the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health will present findings from the on-going WTC Pregnancy Study.   For more information or to RSVP for programs, please contact Laura Horowitz at rsvp@worldcares.org or call 212-563-7570 ext. 20.  Location: September Space Lower Manhattan, 11 Broadway, 11th Floor (between Exchange Place and Bowling Green), New York, NY 10004 http://www.worldcares.org

Tuesday’s Children’s New Parenting Program
Tuesday, January 23, 2007, 4-6:30 pm
Developed in collaboration with the NYU Child Study Center, this five-session program consists of separate classes for parents, children and siblings and will be run concurrently over a ten-week period. This program was created as a result of a survey conducted by Tuesday's Children last year. Children are taught specific social, emotional and behavioral skills through social interactions, free play, structured activities, role plays with puppets, and arts & crafts. While the children are learning and having fun, parents participate in the Parent Group, led by clinical psychologists from the NYU Child Study Center. This group provides parents with support and specific skills to manage their children's behavior and enhance children's social, emotional and behavioral skills. Topics to include: Parents Self-Care, Effective Ways to Manage Misbehavior, Routine Setting and much more!

This program is for single parents and their children of ages 3 1/2 - 6. For children not in this age group, there will be a sibling group.  RSVP to Kathleen at 516 562-9000.
http://www.tuesdayschildren.org/

The Brooklyn Museum’s Looking Back from Ground Zero: Images from the Brooklyn Museum Collection
August 30, 2006 – January 7, 2007

The Brooklyn Museum marks the five-year anniversary of September 11, 2001, with an exhibition of works from the permanent collection that includes paintings, photographs, prints, and drawings of the Lower Manhattan area around the World Trade Center site before, as well as after, the attack. For more information, visit the website http://www.brooklynmuseum.org/ or call 718-638-5000.

Tribute Center Daily Walking Tours
July 18, 2006 – July 18, 2007
The Tribute Center is a project of the September 11th Widows and Victims' Families' Association.   They offer daily public tours around the perimeter of the World Trade Center site. Led by people who lost loved ones, survivors of the attacks, lower Manhattan residents and workers, rescue workers, police, firefighters, and volunteers who came to help, the tours give an overview of what happened at the site on February 26, 1993 and September 11, 2001 and provide an opportunity for visitors to hear their guide’s personal experiences. Tours begins at 120 Liberty Street, in front of the future Tribute Center, and last approximately one hour. Tour reservations can be booked online under “Other Events.” Advanced registration fee is $10.00 per person; children under 12 are admitted free.

Daily Tours
Weekdays 1:00 PM & 3:00 PM EST
Weekends 12:00 PM; 1:00 PM; 2:00 PM, 3:00 PM EST
For more information, email info@tributenyc.org or click here to visit the website.

Resources

9/11 Mental Health and Substance Abuse Program
Enrollment Deadline January 2, 2007
The 9/11 Mental Health and Substance Abuse Program deadline for enrollment is coming soon.  Once you have enrolled, however the benefit can cover services up to December 31, 2007 and you can file claims as late as March 31, 2008.

This program offers financial assistance with the cost of mental health and substance abuse treatment to those directly affected by the attacks, regardless of insurance or immigration status. Financial assistance for treatment is retroactive to September 11, 2001 and will cover dates of service through December 31, 2007. That means if you are eligible and you received treatment after the initial attacks, your out-of-pocket costs may still be covered. 

Those eligible for the 9/11 Mental Health and Substance Abuse Program include those who:

  • Lost a family member 
  • Were physically injured 
  • Lived below Canal Street 
  • Worked in the World Trade Center area or the Pentagon – whether or not you were at work that day 
  • Were evacuated from the World Trade Center area or the Pentagon 
  • Attended a school near the World Trade Center or are the parent of a child who attended a school nearby 
  • Were a rescue, recovery, or reconstruction worker assigned to a “restricted site”  
  • Were an emergency dispatcher on 9/11 or worked in the morgues serving the attack sites worked south of Canal Street or at Ronald Reagan Airport, and before January 11, 2002 lost your job or earned less than 70% of your pre-9/11 income 
  • If you are a family member or shared a home with any of the people whose situations are listed here

Visit the website and begin registration online at http://www.9-11mentalhealth.org/ or call any of the following numbers:
• 1-800-LIFENET (1-800-543-3638) (English) 
• 1-877-Ayudese 1-877-298-3373 (Spanish) 
• 1-877-990-8585 (Asian LifeNet) 
• 1-212-982-5284 (TTY)

Safer World
Show your concern and learn about how to prevent nuclear terrorism.  Act now for a safer world. NTI and Families of September 11 have joined forces to raise awareness about the threats from nuclear, biological and chemical weapons and materials so citizens can help reduce these threats. The 9/11 Commission recommended an all-out effort to secure weapons of mass destruction, but its final report card gave the U.S. government a "D" for its progress. We want to turn that “D” to an “A ". Click here to learn how you can help.

Financial Planning Association
Provides free financial planning to help people affected by September 11 sort through financial issues and aid them in making sound, well-informed choices about how they manage their money. Financial planning can range from managing household budgets or paying for a child's education to planning for retirement. For more information, please call (800) 647-6340 or click here.

Health Resources for 9/11 Rescue and Recovery Workers
FOS11 maintains a health section on the website that includes health resources for 9/11 rescue and recovery workers.  This section includes links to a number of articles in the news as well as information about examination and treatment resources available to people who were possibly exposed to toxic material on, or subsequent to 9/11. Indications are that this will continue to be an issue of growing importance for increasing numbers of people. Families of September 11 will continue to monitor developments and post information as we become aware of it.

New York State Workers’ Compensation Registration Form and Instruction for WTC Rescue, Recovery, and Clean-up Personnel
The New York State Workers' Compensation Law has been changed to allow rescue, recovery, and cleanup workers exposed to toxic materials at WTC to preregister, even if not presently sick. Registering now will protect your right to file a workers' compensation claim if you become ill at any time in the future. The law applies to most people who did paid or unpaid rescue, recovery or cleanup work in Lower Manhattan south of Canal or Pike Streets between Sept. 11, 2001 and Sept. 12, 2002. It also applies to rescue, recovery or cleanup workers who worked at the Staten Island landfill, the barge operation between Manhattan and Staten Island or the New York City morgue, and temporary morgues. The only workers who are not covered are those who are not in the workers’ compensation system: NYC uniformed services (firefighters, police, sanitation workers), NYC teachers and federal employees. But those workers are eligible if they performed any rescue, recovery or cleanup work off-duty, as a volunteer. The new law also allows anyone who already filed a claim - but was turned down because the claim was filed too late - to re-file. Click here to download the Claim Form and Instructions.

National Center for School Crisis and Bereavement
Families of September 11 has been working with the newly created National Center for School Crisis and Bereavement (NCSCB) to raise awareness of how schools can support students, teachers and parents who are struggling with issues of loss and bereavement.  Click here to visit the newly launched website which offers many helpful resources in this area. 

World Trade Center Survivors' Network
The Survivors' Network seeks to provide a forum for personal contact between survivors as a means to empower them to both deal with the circumstances of the aftermath of the attacks and to find renewed purpose in that aftermath. The Network also functions as a place for people to go and get survivors' perspectives and as a conduit for the common thoughts of survivors. On the organization's homepage, there are links to join two different Yahoo groups: Survivorsnet and the WTC Survivors. All of the files and meeting information for the organization are posted in both groups. Click here for more information. 

Remember. Honor. Hope.
FOS11 offers a wrist band, in hope for a better future. Click here to learn more.

Contact Us

Online

Become a Member
Donate Now
info@familiesofseptember11.org

By Phone

General information: 212-575-1878


 
Families of September 11 (FOS11) is a 501(c)(3) organization founded by families of those who died in the September 11 terrorist attacks. Membership is open to anyone affected by the events of September 11, 2001. More than 2,400 people worldwide have chosen to join us.



Families of September 11 is an accredited charity and is a member of the Seal Program, which indicates that our organization has met the 20 Standards for Charity Accountability. For more information about the Standards, please visit the BBB of Metro New York's website at http://www.newyork.bbb.org/.

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