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Profile: US Health and Human Services (HSS)

 
  

Positions that US Health and Human Services (HSS) has held:



 

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US Health and Human Services (HSS) actively participated in the following events:

 
  

September 12, 2001      911 Environmental Impact

       US Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tommy G. Thompson announces his agency's emergency response: “CDC has a team on the ground taking air, dust and water samples. This is of utmost concern to health officials. Also, Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Teams will ensure that the process of removing bodies is conducted as safely as possible, and identifications occur as efficiently as possible. The heavy dust that has coated Lower Manhattan following the attack also poses respiratory risks, particularly to our children and elderly citizens. We are well aware that New York has one of the highest childhood asthma rates in the nation, and CDC officials are working with New York authorities to conduct tests and protect our vulnerable residents from high levels of dust in the air.” [US Health and Human Services, 9/12/2001]
People and organizations involved: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Health and Human Services (HSS), Tommy G. Thompson
          

September 14, 2001      911 Environmental Impact

       US Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tommy G. Thompson announces after meetings in New York with NY State Governor George Pataki and NYC Mayor Rudolph Giuliani that the CDC Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) will send 35 EIS officers to New York hospitals to assist “health officials and physicians monitor diseases, conduct a medical and health needs assessment, identify existing health problems, such as dust or allergic reactions, determine if there are new medical needs, and if already deployed resources are better used elsewhere.” [US Department of Health and Human Services, 9/14/01]
People and organizations involved: George E. Pataki, Rudolph ("Rudy") Giuliani, Tommy G. Thompson, US Health and Human Services (HSS)
          

September 16, 2001      911 Environmental Impact

       The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) publishes a “fact sheet” on the dust and debris that blanketed surrounding streets and penetrated numerous buildings during the collapse of the World Trade Center. The first section, titled, “What is in the dust,” states only: “Dust is a mixture of very fine particles that originally made-up the materials of the WTC and the aircraft that struck it. These particles differ depending on what material the dust came from, how the dust was created, and what happened to the dust after it was released. Analysis of dust samples will provide information on components of the dust. We expect that materials that would be present would be at concentrations lower than those normally associated with health effects.” The flyer makes no effort to name the toxic chemicals and other harmful substances that were known to have been in the two towers. [Kupferman, 2003; US Department of Health and Human Services, 9/16/2001]
People and organizations involved: US Health and Human Services (HSS)
          

(September 19, 2001      911 Environmental Impact

       ATC Associates of New York analyzes bulk dust samples taken from Vesey and Liberty Streets near the WTC site by Monona Rossol, an industrial hygienist with the Arts, Crafts, and Theater Safety organization, and Attorney Joel R Kupferman of the New York Environmental Law and Justice Project. The first four samples tested are found to contain 10-15 percent fiberglass, an extremely high concentration. A quarter of the samples have an asbestos level of 2.1 percent. [Newsday, 10/12/01; New York Environmental Law & Justice Project, 9/19/2001; Village Voice, 9/26/2001; New York Environmental Law & Justice Project, 9/22/2001] Shortly after these results are made public, the New York State Department of Health warns local labs that they will lose their licenses if they process any more “independent sampling.” [Kupferman, 2003 Sources: Unnamed Lab Technician who received one such warning]
People and organizations involved: US Health and Human Services (HSS), Arts, Crafts and Theater Safety organization (ACTS), ATC Associates, New York Environmental Law and Justice Project, Joel R Kupferman
          

September 21, 2001      911 Environmental Impact

       The US Department of Health and Human Services announces that it has released $126 million for disaster related expenses. The figure includes $10.4 million for environmental hazard control to pay for worker safety measures, technical assistance for responding to hazardous environmental exposures, and potential needs related to exposure to contaminants. [US Department of Health and Human Services, 9/21/01]
People and organizations involved: US Health and Human Services (HSS)
          

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