Friday, February 29, 2008

New Orleans facing another storm on homelessness and housing

On Thursday The Times-Picayune reported that two experts from the United Nations said thousands of black families would continue to suffer displacement and homelessness if the demolition of 4,500 public housing units is not halted, but federal housing officials in New Orleans countered that they have units available immediately for former public housing residents displaced by Katrina.

U.N.-appointed experts Miloon Kothari, the U.N. Human Rights Council's investigator for housing, and Gay McDougall, an expert on minority issues, urged U.S. and local government leaders to further include current and former residents in discussions that would help them return home.

"I think this is vindication of what public housing advocates have been saying from day one," said Monique Harden, co-director of the public interest law firm Advocates for Environmental Human Rights, who testified before Geneva-based U.N. experts.

"Recovery must mean the end of displacement for the people of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast," added Harden, who returned to New Orleans last week. "What we have instead is recovery that demolishes affordable housing."

Read more
  • U.N. slams Feds on housing in New Orleans

  • This comes a day after the Mayor of New Orleans released a plan to push hundreds of people on the streets into crowded barracks as a solution to the on-going housing crisis in the Big Easy.

  • Swept to the barracks

  • All of this of course has warranted a response from the Feds asking the mayor to think about things.

  • Feds say hold

  • It's thought more than 12,000 people are actually living on the streets after emergency shelters are full.

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