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The State

December 02, 1987

A group of "atomic widows" urged Congress to repeal the Warner Amendment, which prevents civilian victims of radiation exposure from filing wrongful-death and injury lawsuits. The widows, led by Bonnie McDaniel of Las Vegas, also charged at an Oakland news conference that University of California lobbyists were responsible for the protective legislation in the first place, and now are working to block legislation to repeal the amendment. "UC simply wants to avoid the disclosures which trial of these widow's claims would reveal about university negligence in the nuclear weapons testing program," Dr. Dorothy Legarreta of the National Assn. of Radiation Survivors charged. Because of the amendment, more than 300 wrongful-death lawsuits were dismissed. Paul Sweet, UC's director of federal government relations, said the language in the amendment was provided by officers of the federal government. "We did not actively work to get that language," he said.

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