Benefits delay for fire cadet's family is social injustice, Mikulski says

May 06, 2010|By Julie Scharper, The Baltimore Sun

The federal government's delay to grant benefits to the children of a Baltimore fire cadet who died in a training exercise is a "social injustice," Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski wrote in a bluntly worded letter to Attorney General Eric Holder on Thursday.

Two school-age children of Racheal Wilson, who died in a February 2007 live burn exercise, were denied federal benefits. The family filed an appeal, which was heard in January, but has not heard further information, Mikulski wrote in ther letter.

"Tragic deaths like Ms. Wilson's death should not be compounded by endless delays and outright bureaucratic stalemate," Mikulski wrote.

Wilson's death in an exercise that violated numerous federal guidelines led to sweeping changes in the Fire Department. Her family recently filed a $35 million lawsuit against the city.

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