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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
Over the past months there have been a number of important developments regarding medical issues and illnesses impacting 9/11 responders, survivors, and residents of lower Manhattan. People in all of these groups continue to be diagnosed with various types of respiratory and gastrointestinal diseases as well different kinds of cancers. Controversy surrounds this situation as conflicting reports debate the direct links between exposure to the toxic materials released in the World Trade Center collapse and the high rate of illness in those who were in the vicinity of the WTC on and after September. We encourage all those affected or interested to visit the Families of September 11 Website Health Resources page to keep abreast of this serious situation. The Health Resources page contains up to date information on the latest news articles, medical reports, and treatment resources related to 9/11 health issues.
Additionally this month, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg announced the creation of the City’s World Trade Center Medical Working Group and the appointment of the World Trade Center Health Coordinator, both recommended in the City’s February 2007 report, “Addressing the Health Impacts of 9/11.” Click here to read the full press release.
Outreach to FOS11 Members in the UK
FOS11 President and Co-founder Carie Lemack recently met with some FOS11 members who live in the United Kingdom. These UK family members showed Carie the lovely remembrance garden they created in memory of their loved ones, located near the US Embassy in central London. The family members also passed on ideas about how to help the US better respond to the needs of victims whose families do not live in the United States, ideas which have been passed on to Congress and are being considered in upcoming legislation.
Please read the letter attached below from Shahid Malik MP (a Member of Parliament in the UK government). Mr. Malik is Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group that has just spearheaded an initiative to work with terrorism victims to learn from their experiences in order to provide better, more effective services in the event of another attack. We encourage you to contact his office if you feel comfortable sharing your comments and concerns, and are happy to assist in any way we can. Click here to read the letter.
Welcome New FOS11 Advisory Board Member Ron Shindel
We welcome and thank Ron Shindel for joining the FOS11 Advisory Board. Ron Shindel was the Deputy Inspector (NYPD-Retired) and was the commanding officer for a select group of investigators who were assigned to the World Trade Center Recovery site on September 13, 2001, until that group was disbanded on January 29, 2002. He is currently the Vice President for Public Safety and Quality of Life for the Times Square Management District, a not-for-profit business improvement company. Ron also heads the Times Square Security Council, a group of security professionals within the constituent district with the emphasis on counter-terrorism, safety, and crime reduction. We are grateful for his guidance on issues related to counter-terrorism, public safety and more.
Click here to learn more about our Board of Directors and Advisory Board and read their full bios.
Ground Zero Update
• Search for Human Remains at the WTC Site
The latest press release from Deputy Mayor Skyler to Mayor Bloomberg details the recent developments in the search for human remains at the World Trade Center site. The memo reviews four principal components of the search: the Haul Road, 140 Liberty Street, buildings and rooftops, and subterranean structures. This effort is scheduled to be completed by November 2007. For more information regarding identification of remains and protocols, please contact the OCME’s WTC Unit at (212) 447-7884.
• Ground Zero Activities Updates
FOS11 continues to monitor the progress at Ground Zero and will continue to share information as it is available. However, if you would like updates about activities at Ground Zero, family members are welcome to contact Ada Rehnberg-Campos at the Mayor’s Community Assistance Unit, at (212) 788-7410.
• Property Recovery from WTC site
Since the World Trade Center (WTC) tragedy thousands of items of personal property has been recovered from Ground Zero, the Fresh Kills site and the Medical Examiner's Office at Bellevue Hospital. This property has been invoiced by the NYPD and is in the custody of the NYPD's Property Clerk Division. To learn more about the property recovery from the WTC site click here, you can also contact NYPD Property Clerk Division at (646) 610-7202. If you have contacted the clerk’s office in the past and are unsure about the status of your case, you may need to call them again to follow-up.
• Rebuilding Ground Zero FOS11 Website
Families of September 11 remains dedicated to supporting a timely and appropriate memorial to remember and honor all the lives that were lost on September 11, 2001. We offer this section on our website which is updated regularly with the latest news and information on rebuilding of Ground Zero. We neither support nor oppose any of these groups or websites. Rather, we aim to offer timely updates and provide information as it becomes available. Click here to visit the website.
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, with members of Congress and with organizations across the country. We recently launched two new public service announcements (PSAs) that join the initial three PSAs that have been broadcast on over 100 television stations nationwide. You can view any of these PSAs here.
If you are interested in holding a screening of “Last Best Chance” in your community, asking your local television to air the public service announcements or learning more about the program and what you can do to help prevent nuclear terrorism, please visit the www.saferworld.org website.
Register for Worker’s Compensation Benefits for 9/11 Related Injuries - Deadline to Register: August 14, 2007
Thousands of people who participated in rescue, recovery or cleanup work after 9/11 are now sick. The New York State Workers’ Compensation Law has been changed to allow someone who was exposed, but is not sick, to register for benefits. This includes WTC Rescue, Recovery, and Clean-up personnel. Registering now will protect your right to file a workers’ compensation claim if you become sick at any time in the future. Click here to read a fact sheet regarding Workers’ Compensation Registration. Click here to download the Claim Form and Instructions.
Go to the FOS11 calendar for an updated list of events.
Register Now for the Next FOS11 Chat
With the summer season upon us, now is a great time to enjoy the outdoors, spend time with friends and family or plan a getaway. It is usually the time of year we think about rest, relaxation and renewal. However, for some there may be feelings of looming anxiety about September approaching. How do you take away the power/ impact of that day and reclaim the calendar?
During the next chat, on Wednesday, July 18th we will discuss ways to manage anxiety leading up to September. Do you “build a reservoir of positive feelings” for the future? Or “bottle the sounds, sensations and sunshine of the summer” to save for a fall day? What works for you? Join this chat session to listen to others, share your thoughts and strategies. To enroll, click on the link https://www.familiesofseptember11.org/chat_register.aspx?chatID=71807. For directions using the actual screens you will see when you enroll, click here.
New FOS11 Chat for Teens!
Stay posted for information on our new chat session for teens on July 24th.
Volunteer Opportunity with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
Families of September 11, in partnership with Transportation Security Administration and The Camilla Group will have upcoming speaking events in Milwaukee, WI, New England, Orlando, FL, Los Angeles, CA, Chicago, IL and New York, NY during July and August. (Stay tuned for updates on schedule information and more locations).
Please let us know if you are available and interested in volunteering by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. If you decide to volunteer, you will work closely with the FOS11 staff. They will assist your preparation for the event and offer talking points and training to help you tell your story. To date, we have had events in Washington DC, Miami, FL, New Orleans, LA and Baltimore, MD. We invite you to join us and participate in this program!
The program allows volunteers to speak to Transportation Security Officers (TSO’s) at their local airport alongside FOS11 Board Member, Carie Lemack. This is your opportunity to get involved in a campaign to raise awareness about the importance of thorough and consistent security checks. You will have the unique opportunity to visit with screeners, express solidarity, empower yourself and share your story. This program will engage volunteers nationwide and will allow you to:
- Speak to a group of TSO’s at an airport near your hometown, to tell them your story, and express your support and sentiments regarding their work to ensure 9 /11 never happens again
- Raise public awareness about the importance of aviation security, reminding people that keeping the skies safe is a community effort, not just the work of TSO’s
- Be an integral part of boosting the effectiveness of aviation security across the nation
Volunteer and survivor of 62nd Floor WTC 2, Greg Clark said about his experience with this program, “I found the experience of talking to the TSA team in Miami very rewarding. After surviving the 9-11 attacks I have been searching for ways to prevent something like this happening to other people. The TSA personnel have a really tough job and they were very appreciative of my telling of how I escaped the trade center on 9-11, afterwards many came and thanked me and gave me a hug. I hope that the message we delivered will help keep the TSA people on the top of their game protecting us from another tragedy.”
StoryCorps is a national project to inspire people to record their stories in sound. In 2005, StoryCorps launched the September 11th Initiative. Perhaps you lost a family member or friend; maybe you were a rescue worker or witnessed the attacks first-hand. StoryCorps invites you to record your experiences, so your memory will live on for generations to come.
From a participant in StoryCorps’ September 11th Initiative: “I would want to assure everyone, this story is about your loved one. Who better to tell their story but you, who loved them.... Your love will flow through, and their life will be remembered and honored. I would be happy to attest to the fact that the StoryCorps experience was a wonderful one. My daughter and I cried and then laughed as we remembered so many happy times with my son. I have the recording and have played it for myself, but I hope that someday my grandchildren will have it and know how their Aunt and Grandma felt about their Daddy. I would recommend that anyone who has the opportunity take advantage of it.”
In NYC: You can make a reservation to participate at the StoryBooth in Grand Central Terminal. StoryCorps will also be visiting World Cares (Manhattan) on July 9th and the WTC Family Center (Long Island) on July 23rd to record interviews. Outside NYC: Visit our website to see if our mobile recording booths are coming to your town. Through our Door-to-Door Program, StoryCorps can visit your organization and record interviews on site, or, through our StoryKit Program, you can record an interview at home. For more information or to make a reservation, call (646) 723-7020 x202. To learn more about StoryCorps, visit www.storycorps.net.
Tribute Center Daily Walking Tours
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, and volunteers who came to help. Each tour gives an overview of the events of February 26, 1993 and September 11, 2001 and provides an opportunity for visitors to hear their guide’s personal experiences. Tours start at 120 Liberty Street and last approximately one hour. To reserve your spot on a tour, please visit the center approximately 1 hour before tour time to pick up tickets.
Registration fee is $10.00 per person; children under 12 are admitted free. For more information, email email@example.com or visit their website at http://www.tributewtc.org/. Schedule: Sundays- Fridays 11:00 AM, 12:00 noon, 1:00 PM & 3:00 PM EST; Saturdays 11:00 AM; 12:00 PM; 1:00 PM; 2:00 PM, 3:00 PM and 4:00PM EST.
PAINT with CITYarts in Baruch Park!
Bring friends and family to create the next mural in their "Engaging Graffiti Kids in Creation, not Destruction" mural program (Baruch Pl., Stanton & Margin St. in the Lower East Side) The Baruch Park mural project will work to combine their "Engaging Graffiti Kids in Creation, not Destruction" and "Tribute to New York and New Yorkers" mural programs. In the wake of 9/11 and the redevelopment of lower Manhattan, CITYarts' intention is to validate the lives of the youth who remember by offering them an outlet and an alternative. CITYarts will be painting Monday through Friday in July through September from 11 AM - 6 PM, interested volunteers can contact: Christine Lu at (212) 966-0377 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
St. Vincent’s Catholic Medical Center
FOS11 staff attended a health fair this month hosted by Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Center. Their World Trade Center Healing Services program offers free and confidential counseling and stress management services to anyone affected by September 11th, as well as by other stressful life events. Specializing in psychological trauma treatment, they offer supportive counseling (individuals, couples, groups, families); grief/bereavement counseling; eye movement desensitization reprocessing (EMDR); cognitive behavioral techniques; ear acupuncture, Reiki, hypnotherapy and more. Visit our event calendar for locations and schedule information. To learn more about the program, visit their website or call (212) 346-2582. St. Vincent’s Manhattan also offers behavioral health services, offering scheduled and unscheduled assessments, evaluations and referral services, individual and group psychotherapy and more. Please note that this is not a free service and there is a sliding fee scale if you are uninsured. Call (212) 604-8220 for more information.
Since September 2001 Arnie Korotkin has maintained a free and confidential "9/11 list-serv". The "9/11 list-serv" distributes daily emails containing newspaper articles and other relevant information re: 9/11 issues of interest to 9/11 families and 9/11 organizations. If you would like to 'subscribe' to this free news service - send an email to email@example.com with the word "subscribe" in the subject box.
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." Visit their website at www.saferworld.org to learn how you can help.
Our Voices Together invites you to share your 9/11 related story of helping to build a better world in honor of a lost loved one or friend.
The most recent edition of the FOS11 newsletter “Remembrance and Wellness” included a letter from Eric Gardner, FOS11 member and board member of Our Voices Together, inviting you to join their effort to bring together organizations and individuals working to undermine the global popularity of extremists and to honor lost loved ones by spreading their positive legacy around the world. Founded by 9/11 families and friends, Our Voices Together helps empower individuals to take actions that diminish the hatred fueling terrorist tactics. As Eric wrote in his letter, his family started the Jeffrey Brian Gardner Memorial Scholarship Fund to continue the good work his brother had been doing building homes around the world. Our Voices Together has helped publicize the Gardner Scholarship and is eager to help strengthen the efforts of more families responding to terrorism by reaching out around the world to bring good out of tragedy. Please visit www.OurVoicesTogether.org and call Marianne Scott at (202) 223-0080.
Children of September 11
FOS11 is proud of our Children of September 11 (COS11) program geared towards children, parents, and caregivers. Featured on the site this month is information about the National Center for School Crisis and Bereavement, which helps students, staff and families at times of crisis and loss. In addition, the site features relevant articles, guidance, and resources. Call us at (212) 575-1878 or visit our website to learn more http://www.childrenofseptember11.org
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a 24-hour, toll-free suicide prevention service available to anyone in suicidal crisis. If you need help, please dial (800) 273-TALK (8255). You will be routed to the closest possible crisis center in your area. With over 120 crisis centers across the country, their mission is to provide immediate assistance to anyone seeking mental health services. Call for yourself, or someone you care about. Your call is free and confidential.
If you or someone you know in the New York City area is suffering with emotional or substance abuse problems, LifeNet can help. LifeNet counselors are available, 7 days a week, 24 hours a day and speak a variety of languages. LifeNet is a program of the Mental Health Association of NYC, Inc. To learn more about LifeNet click here. You can reach LifeNet by calling any one of the toll-free, anonymous hotlines:
- (800) LifeNet (800) 543-3638 (English)
- (877) Ayudese (877) 298-3373 (Spanish)
- (877) 990-8585 (Asian LifeNet)
- (212) 982-5284 (TTY)
For information about nationally available mental health support outside of New York State, click here.
Remember. Honor. Hope.
FOS11 offers a wrist band, in hope for a better future. Click here to learn more.
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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