Stricter rules enacted for radiation experimentsMarch 28, 1997
Web posted at: 2:55 p.m. EST (1955 GMT)
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Clinton on Friday announced measures to protect Americans from being mistreated in secret government radiation experiments.
Clinton said government agencies conducting secret experiments will be required to get informed consent from all subjects and tell them which agency is sponsoring the research and that it is of a classified nature.
Clinton also said the families of past radiation subjects will be compensated for their "unethical" treatment by the government. Sixteen families will receive a total of $6.5 million.
In the 1940s and during the Cold War, the federal government conducted secret radiation experiments on some civilians, most of whom were not fully informed about the tests and their dangers. Some subjects were injected with plutonium or uranium, and others were uranium miners who were exposed to radiation as part of the government's nuclear weapons program.
The new rules also require approval of all secret experiments by agency heads and the keeping of permanent records on such projects. The measures were recommended in 1995 by the President's Advisory Committee on Human Radiation Experiments.
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