Thursday, December 20, 2007

IN UNION THERE IS STRENGTH: STANDING 'WITH' OR 'IN' FOR THE RIGHTS OF THE DISPLACED AND HOMELESS IN NEW ORLEANS PUBLIC HOUSING ISSUE


I just got this is from the folks at community.gno@care2.com :


The local news media is picking up HUD and HANO's "dog wagging" about the color, the race or the residency of people who are "giving voice" to the issue of public housing in New Orleans.

Don't be fooled, don't be misled.

Thousands of people who would vote are without transportation or the means to be in New Orleans expressing their point of view.

Without partial sponsorship of an organization, TMO, I would NOT have been able to vote in the mayoral election. With hundreds of elderly people, many of whom were grandmothers who brought their children and grandchildren, I boarded a bus at 4:30 a.m. from Houston to ride into New Orleans and vote.

There was a small cost, a very modest fee, that covered transportation and lunch; those who wished to participate, were asked to wear TMO t-shirts and to participate in a rally with TMO and The Jeremiah Group before or after lunch.

I was grateful to have a ride into New Orleans and was all too happy to pay for myself, to sponsor the fees for a family and to participate in the rally at Duncan Plaza.

So whether standing behind or with any resident of public housing, the homeless and people who have sought or are seeking a housing voucher; whether standing behind those who have been on the front lines of the legal battle to provide representation to the poor, the homeless, the displaced, the exiled or to the thousands of Katrina survivors who are among the working poor; or whether standing as a citizen or a college student of and in the United States, everyone has a right to stand and be heard or to stand in the place of those who can not be present to stand for themselves.


community reference: sankofa, ya'll


Please do NOT forget that New Orleans Fair Housing had to FILE SUIT in
order to obtain "a reasonable" number of affordable housing units in
the prized "River Gardens" of Wal-Mart community. There are thousands of
people - former public housing residents and OTHER New Orleans natives
- who can NOT afford to rent in the City of New Orleans.


When you hear "A. Stacy Head" say that people are receiving vouchers and
no one is homeless who was a resident of public housing, ask the
question and DO the research to identify the LOCATION, ENVIRONMENT and
COMMUNITY of these scattered sites. Matters such as transportation, child
care, socio-economic and environmental conditions, cultural connections
and access to family and friends are often less than favorable and add
nothing of value to these residents' quality of life or to the
communities, of these scattered sites, in which they live.


The Iberville and the Lafitte projects occupy land that developers have
identified, targeted and attempted to "reclaim" for decades, not
unlike the gentrification that HAS TAKEN PLACE in Algiers Pointe, the
Bywater and in Treme. The buildings are historic and worthy of preservation,
green-friendly renovation, and more immediate occupancy in far less
time and for far less money than complete demolition of buildings that
results in a process that fails to guarantee that the displaced, the
exiled, the WORKING or disabled poor, or the thousands of homeless post
Katrina will have a place in New Orleans to call home.


On a planetary note:

In union there is strength.

~Aesop


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