Date & Time: 26 October 2017 – 09:30 AEDT
Presenter: Dr. Erin Smith
The September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks (9/11) killed nearly 3,000 people including 413 emergency first responders. Whilst New York rebounded strongly following 9/11, one of the painful legacies of the disaster is the lasting effect on the physical and mental health of thousands of individuals who survived the attacks — including the 9/11 responders. Now, sixteen years after 9/11, the impact on the responders and their families is ongoing. They are still impacted by long-term physical and psychosocial consequences of that day – traumatized by 9/11 – because what they experienced has not ended.
New cases of 9/11-related illness are diagnosed regularly. Cancer rates are around 15% higher in those who were exposed to Ground Zero compared to those who were not. More than 1,000 responders have died in the years following 9/11 of causes directly related to the time they spent on “the pile.” Over 7,000 are currently being treated for 9/11-related illnesses and some 2,500 responders have retired due to 9/11-related disability. The reality is that the death toll from the terrorist attacks grows larger each year, and while the physical wounds may have healed, the emotional scars remain for many.
This presentation will share stories from these responders and their families, highlighting the never-ending reverberation of pain and suffering.