Hurricane Sandy survivors try to hold onto their homes nearly 10 years later
By Sharon Udasin and Saul Elbein
Residents of Red Hook, Brooklyn — a peninsula surrounded by water that was devastated by Hurricane Sandy in 2012 — are sounding a warning just weeks into the U.S. hurricane season that the impact of climate disasters on primarily minority communities can last nearly a decade.
Climate challenges tend to disproportionately impact minority and lower-income populations, and members of those communities often don't have anywhere to relocate after they're hit by such disasters.
“Blacks have been pushed around the country from a bungalow to a tenement with rats to public housing, but never to anything new,” said Blondel, who founded the local Public Housing Civic Association following Hurricane Sandy. “We’ve been bull-penned by policies and redlining.”
When residents came together in Hurricane Sandy’s aftermath, Blondel said, they created the Ready Red Hook Community Emergency Readiness Plan in collaboration with local leaders. Together, she explained, they have devised solutions such as elevating parts of streets and connecting spaces that are already elevated to reduce tidal flooding. In total, the city has invested $100 million in strengthening the neighborhood against future flooding.
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