The families of some victims of the Virginia Tech massacre will ask the state to create a multimillion-dollar fund that would compensate them for their losses and pay for new programs to bolster campus safety across the nation, reports the Washington Post. Thomas J. Fadoul Jr., an attorney for relatives of 22 slain students, said the fund should be modeled after the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, which Congress created to distribute more than $7 billion to victims of the terror attacks and their relatives. Fadoul said the relatives of the 32 slain students and faculty members are entitled to “at least what the 9/11 people got.” The families of those killed Sept. 11, 2001, collected awards averaging $2 million. Payouts for the injured averaged almost $400,000.
The administrator of the $7 million Hokie Spirit Memorial Fund, which Virginia Tech established to receive donations after the April 16 shootings, has drawn up recommendations for direct payments to the victims. Kenneth R. Feinberg, who administered the Sept. 11 fund, will recommend that the families of those killed at Virginia Tech receive $150,000, and the injured get $25,000 to $75,000. Feinberg will recommend that anyone who was in Norris Hall, where most of the shootings occurred, receive one year of free tuition or $8,000. Fadoul said the families deserve far more money. The relatives want to create a fund large enough to develop innovative ways to improve campus safety nationwide.