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Two busloads of first responders to the World Trade Center attacks traveled to Washington D.C. yesterday in order to ask for better health care coverage for themselves and others. Thousands are people are believed to suffer World Trade Center Illness after being exposed to toxic fumes and rubble. Two jetlines flew into the buildings on September 11, 2001 causing them to collapse. Thousands of people died.

“It’s a crisis,” said 9/11 Health Now member Claire Calladine, who helped lead the Manhattan group to Washington, D.C. “We’re talking about the decimation of thousands of families that stepped up for their country and are now being ignored.”

And the demands are simple: affordable health care.

They will be meeting with members of Congress today. Funding for victims was cut by 77 percent in the proposed 2009 budget. Many of the victims suffer from lung illnesses such as emphysema and mesothelioma. The first responders are just asking for help in continuing to receive the care that they need. Many consider them heroes for their selfless and tireless actions at Ground Zero following the attacks.

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