... as Rep. Matt Cartwright, D-Pa., put it: "It was in the water, and they drank it in the mess halls. And their families bathed in it ... and they filled their canteens with it."
Sweeping legislation to help people exposed to toxic chemicals during military service, signed into law last week by President Joe Biden, extends well beyond burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan to the U.S. Marines' Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.
The new law gives long-awaited legal recourse to potentially hundreds of thousands of ex-Marines, their families and civilian workers who drank contaminated water while at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987.
Congressman Matt Cartwright, a lawyer, reintroduced the Camp Lejeune Justice Act in January as part of an effort he began in 2018.
"You know you put yourself in harm's way when you join the Marine Corps," Cartwright told UPI in a phone interview. "But being poisoned by the well water isn't part of the deal, and that's why these people ought to have their day in court."