“The Biden administration continues to refuse to provide the very small amount of funding, money that’s already been appropriated, that could be used tomorrow to do long-term health screening.”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator JD Vance (R-OH) returned to East Palestine, Ohio yesterday to meet with members of the community and survey the status of the environmental cleanup. In remarks to the media, Senator Vance called on the Biden administration to fund a long-term health screening program for residents:
“We have to get the long-term health screening in place for residents. If you talk to people, this is people who want to move on from this disaster, this is people are still worried about chemical contamination, they want to know with confidence that 10 years down the road, if something happens to their kids, God forbid, or themselves, they can trace it to this accident or not. The only way to do that is to do the health baseline screening that we have talked about and we have tried to pressure the Biden Administration into doing something about – they have been completely unmoved on it.
“In fact, my staff spoke with the White House two days ago and the Biden administration continues to refuse to provide the very small amount of funding, money that’s already been appropriated, that could be used tomorrow to do long-term health screening …
“We realized very early on, and we talked to a lot of epidemiologists and people who are trained in this stuff, that the fundamental question we are trying to answer, and that so many residents had, was literally unanswerable. No one could answer with confidence what chronic exposure at low levels looks like over, again, a decade long period.
“So what we did, we talked to a number of people and we put together a study and said: ‘If you wanted to answer that question, how would you do it?’ We think it will probably cost around $15 million. That’s a rounding error in the federal budget, but the National Institutes of Health needs to be directed by the Biden administration to put the resources behind that study. My office can’t fund it. The state government can’t fund it. The federal government could fund it, and could do so easily, and could do so tomorrow, if the Biden administration put it to work …
“You’ve got to give people confidence that long term chronic exposure is not going to give them problems. That’s why we’ve pushed the health screening stuff so aggressively, and why we frankly need the Biden administration to step up and help us.”
The above photos may be used by media outlets, attributable to the office of Senator Vance.