Trinity Downwinders Benefit on Sunday, March 17th in ABQ

You are cordially invited to attend the Second Annual Benefit for the Trinity Downwinders on Sunday, March 17th from 1 to 5 pm at the National Hispanic Cultural Center.  Featured local artists include New Mexico Music Hall of Fame 2018 Inductee, Franc Chewiwie, and his Latin Jazz Allstars; Paul Pino and the Tone Daddies; and Nosotros  There will be dancing, a cash bar and restaurant, silent auction, and door prizes.

The benefit will raise funds for members of the Tularosa Basin Downwinders Consortium to travel to Washington, DC in support of proposed amendments to the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) that would include the Trinity Downwinders. Currently, the Downwinders are not eligible for compensation and medical care because they are not included in RECA. 

Last year, the benefit raised enough funds to fly ten Trinity Downwinders to Washington, DC to support co-founder, Tina Cordova, as she testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on June 27, 2018.  That hearing was the first time that Trinity Downwinders were able to present their case in a congressional hearing.

New Mexico Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, and Representatives Ben Ray Lujan, Deb Haaland, Xochitl Torres-Small all support proposed RECA amendments that would include the Trinity Downwinders. They also support amendments so that people that worked in uranium mines after 1971 would be included in RECA.

RECA bills will be introduced in the new Senate and House soon.  Hearings before the House Judiciary Committee may be scheduled this spring or summer.

Last year, the Downwinders testified about their over exposure to radiation received following the July 16, 1945 Trinity atomic bomb test.  They explained to the congresspeople the health, cultural, and economic impacts they have experienced living downwind and downstream of the Trinity Site.

The Downwinders documented the harm in their 2017 health impact assessment, entitled, “Unknowing, Unwilling, and Uncompensated:  The Effects of the Trinity Test on New Mexicans and the Potential Benefits of a Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) Amendment.”

Tina Cordova, co-founder of the Tularosa Basin Downwinders Consortium, is grateful to the generous sponsors, the musical artists, and all the people who are donating their time and talents. She said, “Our event will be a sellout this year as it was last year.  We are grateful for the support people have shown us.  We’re looking forward to a very successful event and know those who join us will have a great time.”

The National Hispanic Cultural Center is located at 1701 4th Street, Southwest, in Albuquerque.

To contribute to the silent auction, to sponsor a table, and for additional information or to make a donation, please call 505-235-3427, or visit

1. On July 16, 1945, the U.S. Government tested the first atomic bomb at the Trinity Test Site at the White Sands Missile Range, in south central New Mexico.  It was exploded from a fire lookout at the height of 100 feet.

2. The mushroom cloud gathered up vegetation and soils and rose nearly seven miles into the atmosphere.  It stratified, moving north, east, south, and west, dumping radioactive fallout for days following the blast.

3.  At the point the bomb exploded, the people living downwind and downstream of the Trinity Test Site became “Downwinders,” a term used to describe those who have been harmed from over-exposure to radiation.

4.  In 1990, Congress passed the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) to include Downwinders in Arizona, Nevada, and Utah.  Congress did not include the Trinity Downwinders.  Amendments passed in 2000 also omitted the Trinity Downwinders.

5.  The Tularosa Basin Downwinders Consortium have been working for years to ensure the Trinity Downwinders are included in RECA.


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