In the aftermath of 9/11, the Fresh Kills Landfill was swiftly turned into an extensive sorting ground for roughly one third of the rubble from Ground Zero. Approximately 1.8 million tons of material collected from Ground Zero was hauled to Fresh Kills for sorting. Thousands of FDNY firefighters, NYPD police officers, detectives, DSNY sanitation workers, and forensic evidence specialists spent millions of hours at Fresh Kills to recover remnants of victims. Many of the workers were retirees who volunteered at Fresh Kills to serve families in desperate need of closure.
The federal government recognized the service of these brave men and women by including Fresh Kills workers among the victims eligible for 9/11 benefits under the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act. Additionally, individuals who worked at the various barge piers and vehicle cleanup stations in connection with the Ground Zero cleanup are eligible for 9/11 benefits.
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