It may be described as a 'drop in the bucket' by protesters, but the White House assures that more money will follow the 25 million dollar fund allocated to the treatment of first responders, of the 9/11 attack.
Caesar Borja, 21, the son of a police officer who succumbed to pulmonary fibrosis, supposedly brought about by exposure to toxic dust at the World Trade Centre (WTC) has reported results of his meeting with the president of America.
His father Caesar Borja, Sr. was an officer of the New York Police Department who spent countless hours at the World Trade Center site in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks.
Borja Jr., has been campaigning for more funds to be allocated for the treatment of those having respiratory disorders connected with exposure to toxic airborne particles at Ground Zero; the demolished site of the WTC.
Borja Jr.'s case first became public when he was invited by senator Hillary Clinton to attend the President's State of the Union address in order to highlight his father's plight. The Senator then sent a letter to the president urging him to meet Borja.
Thousands of persons are suffering from respiratory ailments resulting from exposure to toxic air at Ground Zero in the wake of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre.
An autopsy conducted on a 34-year-old police officer last year confirmed the link between the respiratory problems and the exposure at Ground Zero.
Around 40,000 people helped clear debris from the site of the World Trade Center in late 2001 and early 2002 and many of these did not wear facemasks.
Five years since, hundreds of persons have reported respiratory problems that scientists believe are linked to the fine particles released from the debris and inhaled deep into the lungs.
There has been regular monitoring and treatment of those affected. Most of the injury was borne by firefighters, police persons, construction workers and other volunteers who sifted through the rubble to rescue those trapped beneath.
Others affected with respiratory problems include those living in proximity to the WTC.
According to statistics from Mount Sinai hospital, where monitoring and treatment for those affected is carried out, out of the 19,000 workers screened, seven out of every 10 have lung problems.
Says New York Representative Carolyn Maloney regarding the allocation of funds, "It is important to families here in New York, to the men and women who rushed to save others."