9/11

We Will Never Forget

November 23, 2018 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES Today, we continue to do whatever we can to help our 9/11 heroes who are struggling with illnesses and fighting to stay alive. Ever since the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, the city had failed to grant thousands of EMS workers and other municipal workers sufficient sick time to deal with afflictions caused by their exposure to toxins at Ground Zero. Thankfully, this injustice is finally over. After a series of negotiations with us last month, Mayor Bill de Blasio agreed to provide unlimited sick leave to these workers so they don’t have to choose between lifesaving medical treatment and losing their job. After exhausting their sick leave, some EMS workers have had to go to work after receiving chemotherapy the same day. Ensuring this coverage was a matter of fairness, equity — and simply doing what’s right. Firefighters, police [More...]

DC 37 and the City Agree on Unlimited Paid Sick Leave for 9/11 Heroes

October 24, 2018 // 1 Comment

By MIKE LEE After weeks of intense negotiations, the union won a landmark victory for our 9/11 first responders and other members who worked at the World Trade Center site during the rescue, recovery and cleanup. On Oct. 23, Mayor Bill de Blasio, DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido, Local 3621 President Vincent Variale and Local 2507 President Oren Barzilay announced that the city will provide unlimited 9/11 sick leave to city workers who participated in WTC rescue, recovery and cleanup operations and contracted a 9/11- related illness. The sick leave will be retroactive to Sept. 11, 2001, and cover an estimated 2,000 active city workers who work in several city agencies, including Emergency Medical Technicians, peace officers, laborers, engineers, among other job titles. The agreement forms a basis for future arrangements with other unions that represent eligible workers. “This [More...]

Union Speaks Out for Sick Time for WTC Heroes

October 18, 2018 // 0 Comments

By MIKE LEE In a recent hearing before the New York State Senate Civil Service and Pensions Committee, several DC 37 local leaders and members called upon legislators to give city workers the sick time they need as a result of the work they performed at the World Trade Center in the aftermath of 9/11. Earlier this year, the state Senate passed a bill to extend unlimited sick leave, now received by state and local first responders suffering from 9/11-related illnesses, to city workers. The bill has languished in the state Assembly. At the hearing, Local 2507 President Oren Barzilay, who leads more than 4,000 uniformed Emergency Medical Technicians, Paramedics and Fire Inspectors, testified that city agencies have made it difficult for sick members — who only earn one day of sick leave a month — to take time off. “Twelve days a year are not enough for our members who are sick from [More...]

We Remember

September 10, 2018 // 0 Comments

  As we approach the anniversary of the terrible events on 9/11, we remember the courage and sacrifice of our DC 37 sisters and brothers who worked tirelessly that day and beyond, risking their lives and health to safe others, give comfort and to keep the city functioning during an unprecedented crisis. In 2011, AFSCME, DC 37’s national union, produced the following documentary on that terrible day, and the hardworking city workers—DC 37 members—who worked throughout the [More...]

Help is Available for 9/11 Claims

January 5, 2018 // 0 Comments

By MIKE LEE Were you there on Sept 11th? Did you work on the Ground Zero? Are you experiencing health issues from the attacks on the World Trade Center and need help filing a claim, but do not have an attorney? Help is here. The Sept. 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF), in conjunction with the New York Law School, has set up free clinics for individuals needing assistance filing a claim with the VCF. As a one-time consultation, volunteer law students or law school staffers will provide information on the application process and assist you in completing and submitting the on-line claim form (see link below). Sessions are on Friday, Jan. 26, with appointment times at 1 p.m., 2 p.m., and 3 p.m. and at 4 p.m. A second session is available on Tuesday, Jan. 30, with appointments for 4 p.m., 5 p.m., 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The New York Law School is located at 185 West Broadway, in downtown [More...]

That September Morning

September 11, 2016 // 0 Comments

It was a perfect September morning. The weather was perfect, cloudless, heralding the end of summer. The day was Tuesday, primary day in New York City. As then-favored mayoral candidate Public Advocate Mark Green campaigned near Greenwich Village’s Sixth Avenue, a plane flew overhead. Witnesses from several miles away remember it sounded like a truck driving over metal plates. To them that was how they remembered the sound of a Boeing 767 crashing into the World Trade Center’s North Tower. Eighteen minutes later, a second Boeing 767 struck the South Tower. In less than two hours, nearly 3,000 were dead or missing, including four DC 37 members. Hundreds more were injured, while hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers — some covered in toxic dust — marched in all directions under a cloud of billowing smoke and ash spewing from the flaming wreckage of the World Trade Center complex [More...]

DC 37 Hosts 9/11 Exhibit in September

September 10, 2016 // 0 Comments

By MIKE LEE The union will hold a special opening at 5:30 p.m. on Sept. 12 in the First Floor Gallery for the stone lithographic work of pioneer firefighter and retired FDNY officer Brenda Berkman, to honor the memory of the thousands of heroes who gave their lives and survivors who now cope with debilitating illnesses in the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center, on Sept. 11, 2001. Berkman, who broke barriers by becoming the first woman firefighter in FDNY history, was a FDNY fire officer who was a first responder on 9/11 and was survivor and witness of that terrible day, when hundreds of her colleagues lost their lives. Since 2008, Berkman began working with stone lithographs as an artistic medium. Two years later, she started working on 9/11 lithographs and the World Trade Center. She also organized a collaborative art project with 13 other artists based on a self-portrait she [More...]