|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
AUGUST 30, 2004
|CONTACT: Sierra Club
David Willett 202-675-6698
Republican Focus on 9/11 Ignores Failures in the Aftermath: Sierra Club Releases two Print Ads Profiling Workers and Residents with Chronic Health Problems
WASHINGTON - August 30 - While friends of the Bush administration invoke the heroes of September 11, 2001 tonight, it is likely they will not discuss how President Bush mishandled the cleanup and misled the public about the safety of Ground Zero. Rescue and cleanup workers, area employees, volunteers, and residents were told the Ground Zero area was safe when administration experts knew the pollution was harmful. And now the Bush administration is turning the failures in the aftermath of 9/11 into official policy for handling future emergencies or attacks.
"While the Bush administration invokes the heroes of 9/11 tonight, they continually fail to mention how they literally left many of those heroes in the dust -- to deal with toxic pollution and chronic health problems. And now the Bush administration wants to turn those mistakes into policy, putting future heroes at risk," said Carl Pope, Executive Director of Sierra Club.
During the Republican convention, residents and workers of the Ground Zero area will participate in a daily vigil (on Broadway between Liberty and Cedar) to hold President Bush accountable for failing to protect public health in the aftermath of 9/11. The goals of the sunrise-to-sunset (6:30 a.m.7:30 p.m.) events are to call upon President Bush to meet the needs of the people exposed to Ground Zero pollution, and to educate the nation about the need for better public health protection in national emergencies.
The Sierra Club is also running two print ads in the New York Times this week telling the stories of a rescue worker and a Ground Zero area resident who are suffering from the failures in the aftermath of 9/11. The ads can be viewed at http://www.sierraclub.org/pressroom/media/
On August 18, the Sierra Club released a hard-hitting report titled, "Air Pollution and Deception at Ground Zero: How the Bush Administrations Reckless Disregard of 9/11 Toxic Hazards Poses Long-term Threats for New York City and the Nation." Spokespeople are available to talk about the local and national impacts of the reports findings. The report can be found at http://www.sierraclub.org/groundzero
Spokespeople include Sierra Club President Larry Fahn, who is attending the convention, and New York City Executive Suzanne Mattei, who wrote the report and is an organizer of the vigil.