MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Miami resident and Holocaust survivor David Mermelstein gave emotional testimony to the Senate judiciary committee, calling on the U.S. Senate to pass legislation that would help others like him collect the insurance claims of their relatives murdered by the Nazis.

The president of the Holocaust Survivors of Miami-Dade County is lobbying for survivors to be able to sue European insurance companies for policies that Nazi Germany violated.

Here is what Mermelstein, who is now 90, said when asked about the challenges Holocaust survivors face when it comes to getting the compensation they are entitled to.
“Without action by Congress, the insurance companies will be the heirs of the victims of the Holocaust. This is unacceptable.”

“Survivors resent the idea of a humanitarian payment instead of the actual funds we know our parents set aside in case of trouble,” Mermelstein said.

Mermelstein also testified how he and his family were sent to Auschwitz, and that he was the only member of his family to survive the concentration camp.

We have featured Mermelstein many times here on CBS4, and traveled in 2012 with him and other Holocaust survivors to Poland when they returned to Auschwitz for the first time since the liberation back in 1945.

Click here to watch CBS4 special “March of the living, return to Auschwitz” in its entirety.