The Camp Lejeune water contamination resulted from leaking fuel tanks and an off-base dry cleaning company that released toxic chemicals, including trichloroethylene (TCE) and benzene, into the groundwater. The military used the water to supply drinking water to the base and nearby civilian communities from 1953 until 1987.
The water contamination at Camp Lejeune caused several health problems for those exposed to it, including cancer, birth defects, heart attacks, neurological disorders, and more.
Congress passed the Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act in response to the contamination in 2012. The 2012 act provides VA compensation (disability and survivor benefits) for veterans and their families harmed by the water contamination. However, it didn’t go far enough, and in 2017, there was an expansion of benefits to include other presumptive health issues.
For years, veterans exposed to toxic water at Camp Lejeune have been fighting for justice. Now, with the passage of the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022, they will finally get it.
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 is important for 3 reasons:
- It will provide much-needed relief for those affected by the water contamination.
- It will help prevent similar tragedies from happening in the future.
- It will send a message that our country values the sacrifices made by our veterans.
1. Camp Lejeune Vets Have Been Waiting for Relief for Too Long
The first reason why Camp Lejeune justice is good for all veterans is that it provides much-needed relief for those affected. For years, these veterans have been fighting for compensation and medical care, and the passage of the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 will finally provide them with some much-needed assistance.
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 is essential because it enables veterans and their families to pursue legal action for what happened to them. In many cases, people died as a result, and a spousal survivor benefit of $1,300 each month can’t begin to replace the value of their loved one — both their intrinsic value and their earning potential to support their family.
2. It Can Help Prevent Future Tragedies
The second reason this act is so important is that it will help prevent similar tragedies. By holding those responsible for the contamination accountable, we can communicate that our country takes the safety of our veterans seriously.
Something as costly as this scandal results in improved safety and the desire to ensure it doesn’t happen again.
3. It Sends a Message of Commitment to Our Brave Servicemembers
The third reason why Camp Lejeune justice is helpful for all veterans is that it sends a message that our country values the sacrifices made by our veterans. Too often, we take these men and women for granted, and this act is a reminder that the American people will never forget their service and sacrifice.
Many veterans at Camp Lejeune were stationed there before being deployed to war zones. For many, this was their last taste of peace at home on American soil before reaching Korea, Vietnam, and other conflict areas. If a soldier cannot train in safety, what message does that send?
Prioritizing this legislation as a bipartisan effort — particularly amid some of the most volatile political circumstances — sends a powerful message. We are showing the world how much we value our service members.
If you were exposed to the toxic water at Camp Lejeune and developed a health issue as a result, or if you know someone who was, be sure to contact a Camp Lejeune lawyer to get started on your claim. Justice is finally within reach.
If you have any questions or want more information about the Camp Lejeune Justice Act, please don’t hesitate to contact a lawyer connected with the Camp Lejeune Claims Center. We’re here to help however we can. Thank you for your service and sacrifice.