Eight Years after Katrina, Nearly Half of all Black Residents Have Not Returned Home To New Orleans, Louisiana aka NOLA
Most of us saw the terrible sequence of events that came to be known as Hurricane Katrina. Millions of people were affected, mostly black and brown. The worst part was that the US government abandoned those people and left many of them to die on the streets that they lived.
It’s been eight years, and even though Katrina is long gone, millions of residents of New Orleans have yet to return to the city they loved so much. A total of 1,833 people passed during the storm. Most of the majority white areas have been rebuilt, but the black neighborhoods have not.
There were 600,000 people left homeless after Katrina and the cost of the damage was $125 bilion. Only about 30 percent of the residents of the Lower 9th Ward have returned to the city, according to Al-Jazeera. The rest of the neighborhoods have been gentrified by more affluent whites, colleges students, etc.
Joyce Morris, who lives in the Lower 9th, told Al-Jazeera that it took her six years to rebuild her house.
“My whole house was underwater. The whole entire house was underwater,” Morris said.
She says that many of her neighbors are afraid of returning to the city after enduring the horrors that they were forced to face. There is also a shortage of housing which is partly a result of rising housing cost. A city which was once had rentals in the city for as cheap as 500 dollars now has doubled and in some cases tripled.
“We’re not exaggerating when we say these things … people are scared to come back,” she said.
This week, a group of residents and elected officials have come together to talk about the impact that climate change has had on residents of the gulf coast area.
“In the past eight decades, Louisiana has lost 1,880 square miles of coastal marshes or an area about the size of Manhattan,” Norma Jean Sabiston of the Climate Action Committee Louisiana told the Times-Picayune. “It is land that Louisiana and our nation cannot afford to lose.”
A government report on the coast reveals that African Americans were the least likely to return to the Gulf Coast out of all groups of people. A total of 82 percent of whites returned, but only 54 percent of African Americans. It has also been revealed that black residents were given a lot less money to rebuild, leading to a lack of development in predominantly black areas.