U.S. veterans exposed to
tainted water at Marine base to get benefits
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[January 13, 2017]
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Obama administration has agreed to
provide disability benefits to military veterans exposed to contaminated
drinking water while at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, according to an
official notice published on Thursday.
Veterans, former reservists and former National Guard members who
served for at least 30 days at the U.S. Marine Corps Base from 1953
to 1987 and have been diagnosed with one of eight diseases are
eligible, according to the document published in the Federal
Register, the government's official journal. (http://bit.ly/2j6cfdz)
The Associated Press, which first reported the story, said the
estimated cost to taxpayers of the added benefits would total $2.2
billion over five years.
The additional payments from the Department of Veterans Affairs
would start in March and go to veterans who developed adult
leukemia, aplastic anemia, bladder cancer, kidney cancer, liver
cancer, multiple myeloma, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and Parkinson's
disease, the notice said.
The department has estimated that up to 900,000 service members were
potentially exposed to the tainted water at the base, the AP
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Contaminants included the volatile organic compounds
trichloroethylene, perchloroethylene, benzene and vinyl chloride.
(Reporting by Eric Walsh; Editing by Eric Beech)
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