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Navajo officials meet to discuss uranium exposure legislation, medical care

During the Cold War, the uranium industry dug hundreds of mines on the Navajo Nation.

Officials with the tribe met recently to discuss the impacts of uranium exposure to tribal members.

Navajo President Jonathan Nez and members of the tribal council have negotiated a two-year extension of the Radiation Exposure and Compensation Act to help downwinders and others affected by uranium exposure.

President Joe Biden signed the legislation in June. The tribe hopes the extension will provide a window to negotiate a long-term deal that will last until 2040.

Nez and other officials met with tribal members last week to talk about progress on extending the bill and the challenges of getting health care.

Ron Dungan was a senior field correspondent at KJZZ from 2020 to 2024.