[Air-l] Fwd: Katrina -- one week after

Jeremy Hunsinger jhuns at vt.edu
Tue Sep 6 09:55:44 PDT 2005

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Begin forwarded message:

> From: Wesley Shrum <shrum at lsu.edu>
> Date: September 6, 2005 12:52:05 PM EDT
> To: 'jeremy hunsinger' <jhuns at vt.edu>
> Subject: Katrina -- one week after
> .
> ****
> On Sept 5, one week after Katrina, a team of ten people conducted
> qualitative interviews in the parking lot with approximately 50  
> displaced
> persons at a central Baton Rouge location.  Afterwards, we met for  
> a couple
> of hours, to abstract a consensus view of what we had learned.  It is
> important to keep in mind that we spoke with individuals with some  
> mobility
> (own car, other’s car, bus) that had been displaced by Hurricane  
> Katrina and
> we have not yet interviewed those living in collective shelters.
> --The vast majority are from the New Orleans metropolitan area  
> (including
> Kenner, Metairie, Chalmette, but not the New Orleans North Shore or
> Plaquemines).  The vast majority of displaced persons are staying  
> in private
> homes.
> --The further one goes away from hurricane areas, the more, the  
> better, and
> the quicker is the assistance (people came back to Baton Rouge  
> because they
> want to be closer to home, even in spite of reduced assistance).
> --Crime and fear of crime was universally unobserved or  
> insignificant, both
> for early and late evacuees.
> --Blacks are more committed to returning home to New Orleans than  
> whites,
> who express more reservations about returning (note, this does not  
> take into
> account social class).
> --Displaced people have received assistance from (in order of  
> importance),
> family, friends, and strangers.  Churches have helped.  Public  
> (government)
> assistance was not just negligible—no member of the team recalled any
> instance of government assistance reported by this group of  
> individuals (in
> the rare cases where help was requested, it was not provided).
> --Most people consider themselves to be very lucky, doing well, or  
> doing
> reasonably well given the circumstances.  They are not requesting  
> assistance
> (beyond that they are receiving, and some of the most fortunate  
> have their
> own means).  But the minority of persons who are not doing well  
> --The main concerns are financial, for a place to stay, and  
> education for
> their children.
> Put simply, depending on how long before they move back (if they  
> do), people
> are worried that they will wear out their residential welcome.
> Summarized by W. Shrum, 5 September 2005
> http://worldsci.net  World Summit event in Tunisia
> http://worldsci.net/global Science & Development Project site
> http://4sonline.net Society for Social Studies of Science
> http://www.lsu.edu/sociology

Jeremy Hunsinger
Center for Digital Discourse and Culture
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