I Am Not Case Number 0615664!
I am writing this letter to express how I feel about what you have done to me and my life. I believe it's not fair for me to expect you to know what I've lost because you don't even know who I am. Well I'm going to tell you who I am, what I've lost, and what I am NOT!
I am not case number 0615664. I am not a non-functioning part of society who has waited for a handout all my life! I am not a liar, and I am not weak and unimportant. I am Jamie Griffin. I have a name and a voice! I am my father’s daughter and I fight for the underdog. I always stand up for what I believe is right even when I stand alone. I graduated from a talented and gifted high school in Hotel/Barge Housing Clean-up Workers Natchitoches, LA. Approximately 200 kids in the entire state of Louisiana pass the testing and interview process to attend this school each year.
Since working for your oil spill I have trouble doing the simplest tasks. Things that I should ease through are frustrating to me. I feel like I am functioning with half the brain God gave me and it was not yours to take away! I have suffered many trials in my life and have come through each one a stronger and better person. I am not a whiny baby who can't take pain or suffering. I have suffered more loss and pain than you will ever know. It must be easy to sit in an office and appoint others to clean up your messes! Even with the knowledge that these chemicals had human side effects you still chose to put thousands of people in harm's way. I can't even imagine how you sleep at night!
You decided my fate with no regard to me or anyone else you condemned to this end. If you had been the ones who had to touch it, breath it, clean it, and deal with it I'm sure the protocol would have been a lot different! I have suffered mentally and physically every day since you so carelessly threw my life away! I had a good job, a home, a car, and a future! You have left me with broken pieces of my life that is now my responsibility to put back together.
Even if I physically get better I will never be the same and Tony Hayward wants HIS life back! Please spare me the pity party! I want my culture back! I want my home back! I want my money back! I want my brain and memory back! Most of all I want my health back! There's a list for you! I don't expect you to care about me personally because you are nothing more than a heartless corporation who only cares about profits, bottom lines, and tax breaks! Well, where's my break? When will people start "Putting People First"? That's the motto of the company that contracted me to you, and I'm still trying to figure out what people they mean!
You will never again be able to think of me as a number. I am a person and I will spend every last second of my life reminding you of what you have done to me and my future! Alone I am weak but when I unite with my fellow victims I am strong and we will be a force to reckon with! I am not going to sit here and feel sorry for myself either, I'm going to act and I hope everyone else in my situation does the same thing.
(The woman whose life you stole)
P.S. - I pray every night for you not me, because our blood is on your hands!
Jamie Griffin graduated from a talented and gifted high school in Natchitoches, LA in 1997. While employed by a BP contractor, she spent nearly six months living on a floating hotel/barge where she worked nearly non-stop cooking, washing clean-up workers’ contaminated work clothes and mopping floors that had been dirtied by oil-covered boots. Jamie has been a strong voice for individuals who are suffering due to the BP Oil Drilling Disaster.
"Flotel" Housing Clean-up Workers. Photo Credit AP/Gerald Herbert