State Senate approves study of Maine military affected by Canadian ‘Agent Orange’ exposure

Agent Orange Awareness Day sign at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial
Agent Orange Awareness Day sign at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial(Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund)
Published: Jun. 6, 2023 at 6:11 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Maine (WABI) - The state legislature is one step closer to getting answers on the health effects to Maine National Guardsmen exposed to harmful chemicals while training in Canada.

The Maine Senate unanimously approved LD 1597, which would establish the Gagetown Harmful Chemical Study Commission.

Officials say Maine National Guardsmen who trained in Gagetown, New Brunswick between 1966 and 1967 were exposed to the harmful herbicide “Agent Orange.”

Exposure has been linked to various cancers.

The Canadian Government approved compensation in 2007 for those affected, but Senate President Troy Jackson says that affected Maine National Guardsmen are ineligible for benefits.

The bill faces additional votes from the House and Senate.