Published October 5, 2019
Will be joined by Reps. Luján, Haaland
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Next Monday, October 7, U.S. Senator Tom Udall, vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, will chair an official Indian Affairs Committee oversight field hearing entitled “America’s Nuclear Past: Examining the Effects of Radiation on Indian Country” at the Southwest Indian Polytechnic Institute (SIPI). The committee will examine the unique history and legacy of the atomic age in Indian Country and discuss efforts to ensure that the federal government lives up to its obligations to compensate Native communities hurt by America’s Cold War activities, as well as clean up and properly maintain abandoned uranium mines and sites.
Udall will be joined by U.S. Representatives Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) and Deb Haaland (D-N.M.), as well as two panels of witnesses.
During the hearing, Udall will discuss his legislation to expand coverage of the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) to cover victims in New Mexico and Indian Country, including the Post-1971 Uranium Workers and the Tularosa Downwinders. Udall has worked for years to expand the original RECA legislation.
Witnesses will include:
DAVID W. GRAY, Deputy Regional Administrator, Region 6, Environmental Protection Agency, Dallas, TX
PETER O’ KONSKI, Deputy Director, Office of Legacy Management, Department of Energy, Washington, D.C.
Dr. LORETTA CHRISTENSEN, Chief Medical Officer, Navajo Area, Indian Health Service, Window Rock, AZ
THE HONORABLE MICHAEL CHAVARRIA, Governor, Santa Clara Pueblo, Santa Clara Pueblo, NM
THE HONORABLE JONATHAN NEZ, President, Navajo Nation, Window Rock, AZ
RYAN RILEY, Council Representative, Laguna Pueblo, Laguna, NM
PHIL HARRISON, Advocate, Navajo Uranium Radiation Victims Committee, Shiprock, NM
TINA CORDOVA, Co-Founder, Tularosa Basin Downwinders Consortium, Albuquerque, NM