Friday, August 29, 2008

Three years later:

WOC PhD list some of the problems that still plague New Orleans:
  • 81% who received state administered Road Home Grants fell short 35% or higher of their need
  • 70,000 homes remain vacant many of them in black and queer neighborhoods
  • thanks to relief related gentrification and the President’s plan to turn NOLA commercial - rent has gone up 46%
  • only 19% of public housing remains
  • only 20% of section 8 housing remains
  • only 30% of low cost housing remains while 60% of high cost housing has been rebuilt
  • According to a Women’s Policy Research Report (2007) the housing crisis is increasing domestic and sexual violence
  • the devastation to the largest Native Nation in the area has gone largely unnoticed (see the youtube below)
  • public transit is only at 21% of its pre-Katrina service (and as you may recall many in NOLA do not have alternative mode of transport)
  • African American population in the city went from 70% to less than 50% (again something both GW Bush and Laura Bush praised during the crisis)
  • The entire staff of the public school system was fired and the state refused negotiation with Teacher’s Unions (NOLA schools were extremely bad, however this decision was excessive and it took leadership for school reform from the hands of committed teachers and local parents)
  • the school system went from 128 schools to 88
  • 124 schools run by the school district is now 38 schools; the other 50 are charter (private) schools
  • the school system is run by 42 different entities in total making the system so widely variant and inaccessible as to render accountability largely void
  • 40% fewer special ed students are being served
  • there are no concrete numbers on how many students are being left behind in this system as most of the articles are focusing on the advanced pedagogical strategies and curriculum for those who make it in (again a much better system than many of the previous schools; the problem is the reforms are not reaching the entire population)
  • Charity Hospital and many of the mental health facilities for low income people remain closed

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