DENVER (CBS4) – Colorado Rep. Diana DeGette is pushing legislation to help veterans dealing with exposure to toxic chemicals while serving overseas.

DeGette says a new bill would help thousands of vets who were exposed to airborne hazards released from Iraqis and Afghans using burn pits. The pits are used to burn debris and release dangerous chemicals into the air.

On Monday at National Jewish Hospital one soldier talked about his ongoing health problems.

“When we arrived home I noted my concern of possible environmental exposures during my initial and all subsequent post appointment health assessments,” Sgt. Adam Nilson with the Ohio National Guard said. “These concerns went unheard. Returning to a cold Ohio winter aggravated my lungs in no uncertain terms. My coughing spasms were so severe I would vomit.”

National Jewish has been studying the health problems. DeGette says her bill would create three centers across the country aimed at helping vets deal with toxic dust problems.


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