Jon Stewart among those in fight for aid for vets exposed to toxic burn pits
A new push is being made to help veterans suffering from diseases linked to burn pits and other toxic exposures, with Jon Stewart at the forefront of trying to making the change stick.
Stewart was joined by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Nesconset resident John Feal and others to urge Congress to pass a new bill that would streamline the process for vets in obtaining VA benefits linked to their service.
Gillibrand says all service members would have to do to receive care is submit evidence of deployment to one of 34 countries named in the bill.
About 3.5 million veterans have been exposed to toxic burn pits. The group says the VA is denying benefits to veterans with conditions linked to burn pits and other toxins.
Stewart, who in the past took to Congress to plead for help for 9/11 first responders, slammed lawmakers for failing to aid veterans.
"They don't want to do this for these veterans because they think it's too expensive," says Stewart. "We always have money for war. But we never have money for the warfighters."
Danielle Robinson was in attendance Tuesday. Her husband Heath died in May because of his time fighting in Iraq. Robinson says her husband developed lung cancer from breathing in the toxins.
"Thanks to our top military officials deciding not to properly dispose of trash in Iraq due to inconvenience and expense," she says.