Black Lung Disease In The Courts
Merica I. Johnson v. Caspar Weinberger is one many cases filed against the Secretary of Health Education and Welfare seeking benefits under the status of "black lung." Black lung, a term used for pneumoconiosis arising out of coal mime employment, was a condition contracted by hundreds of mine workers. Merica Johnson's husband Leo, a World War II Navy veteran, worked for Inland Steel in Wheelwright, Kentucky for seventeen years. He died on the job at age forty-six, and his wife never received disability compensation.