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Goldberg’s Response to Washington Post Article About Spillionaires

Posted on behalf of Goldberg Finnegan, LLC on Apr 23, 2011 in Negligence

Our law firm, in conjunction with Finckbeiner & Robin, represent many of the fishermen, oystermen and small business owners that reside in St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana in their Gulf Oil Spill Claims. These hard working individuals have had their lives destroyed as a result of the negligence of BP, Transocean, Haliburton and the other Defendants. Well last week, on April 14, 2011 the Washington Post ran a front page story titled "In Gulf Coast, streams of 'Spillionaires' which I felt unfairly characterized our clients as taking advantage of the situation in Louisiana. None of the clients we represent have become rich from the spill. In fact, to date, none of our clients have been made whole as a result of the spill and many of the fishermen still cannot fish and the oystermen cannot harvest oysters. To read the article click here. post article unfairly characterizing fishermen as spillionaires.pdf

Kevin Goldberg wrote a letter to the editor of the Washington Post. the letter read:

The April 14, 2011 front page story titled In Gulf Coast, streams of 'spillionaires' completely mischaracterizes the plight of the fishermen, oystermen, shrimpers and waterfront small business owners in St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana in the year since the spill. As an attorney representing dozens of fishermen, oystermen and shrimpers from St. Bernard Parish, I have firsthand knowledge of the fact that these waterfront communities in areas such as Shell Beach, Hopedale and Delacroix Island are still devastated as a result of the oil spill. Many of the fishermen in these communities are now suffering from depression and other mental health issues because their livelihood has been taken away from them, and they are now unable to provide for their families. While some fishing areas off of the Louisiana Coast have reopened, there simply is not a market for Gulf of Mexico Seafood at this time. Nobody is buying the oysters. Most of the fishermen have not received anything close to adequate compensation from the Gulf Coast Claims Facility or BP. the fishermen struggle every day to put food on the table to feed their families, and to keep their houses out of foreclosure.

For the Washington Post to publish a front page story suggesting that "all is well" on the Gulf Coast and that these devastated communities of fishermen are gaming the system and have become millionaires is not only inaccurate, but it also does a disservice to these struggling communities. As we approach the one year anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon explosion and spill the public needs to know that the suffering and losses continue to grow.

The bottom line is that the people we represent in Gulf Oil Spill lawsuits are some of the strongest and hardest working people you will ever meet. After hurricane Katrina, they rebuilt their homes, and were just getting back on their feet when the BP Gulf Oil Spill hit in 2010. Now, a year later, the fishermen and oystermen in St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana are realizing that unlike Katrina, this is not the kind of disaster that they can rebuild and recover quickly from. Please keep the fishermen and oystermen of Louisiana in your thoughts and prayers as they continue to struggle.

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