ESA-OWCP New Release: [03/23/2009]
Contact Name: Dolline Hatchett
Phone Number: (202) 693-4650
Release Number: 09-0278-NAT
U.S. Department of Labor pays $100 million in benefits to Arizona residents under Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act
WASHINGTON The U.S. Department of Labor today announced that it has paid 1,583 Arizona residents more than $100 million in compensation and medical benefits under the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA). The act was created to assist those individuals who became ill as a result of working in the atomic weapons industry. Survivors of such individuals may also be eligible for benefits. Since the implementation of the act, the department has paid more then 49,590 claimants $4.6 billion in compensation and medical benefits nationwide.
“We strive to put claimants first and to ensure that they receive the very best customer service possible. This accomplishment continues to show our dedication to veterans of the Cold War living in Arizona and nationwide,” said Rachel P. Leiton, director of the Labor Department’s Division of Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation, which administers the EEOICPA.
The EEOICPA provides compensation and medical benefits to employees who became ill as a result of employment in the atomic weapons and uranium mining industries. The act is divided into two parts, B and E, each having unique criteria for awarding benefits. Part B covers current or former workers who have been diagnosed with cancers, beryllium disease or silicosis, and whose illness was caused by exposure to radiation, beryllium or silica while working directly for the U.S. Department of Energy, that department’s contractors or subcontractors, a designated Atomic Weapons Employer or a beryllium vendor. Workers or their survivors found eligible under Part B may receive a lump sum compensation payment of $150,000 and medical expenses for their covered conditions.
Part E provides coverage to Department of Energy contractor or subcontractor employees who developed any illness, including cancer, beryllium disease and silicosis, as a result of occupational exposure to a toxic substance at a covered Energy Department facility. Workers found eligible under Part E of the EEOICPA receive payment of their medical expenses for their covered illness and may also be eligible for wage loss and/or impairment compensation. Survivors found eligible under Part E receive a lump sum compensation payment of $125,000 and may also be eligible to receive additional compensation if the worker experienced wage loss due to the accepted condition.
Uranium miners, millers and ore transporters who developed an illness as a result of exposure to toxic substances while working in a Radiation Exposure Compensation Act Section 5 uranium mine, uranium mill or ore buying station from Jan. 1, 1942, through Dec. 31, 1971, may also be eligible to receive federal compensation and medical benefits under the EEOICPA.
The Department of Energy maintains 11 resource centers nationwide that provide in-person and telephone-based assistance to service individuals regardless of where they live. Arizona residents are serviced by the Las Vegas Resource Center located at Flamingo Executive Park, 1050 East Flamingo Road, Suite W-156, Las Vegas, NV 89119. The toll-free number to inquire about potential eligibility under the act is 866-697-0841.