Marion Pellicano Ambrose
The nightmare that was Hurricane Sandy is not over for many east coast residents. Can I even call them residents? Scores of people are still homeless and living in shelters and some are actually living on the streets. It’s January 2013 and there are fellow Americans still without power, living in what’s left of their home with mold and refuse all around them. Many Americans and organizations have been kind and generous in their response to the disaster, but what about our own government? As
struck, politicians got up and promised
quick response, relief and assistance. And then there was the House of
Tuesday night, House Speaker John Boehner, allowed the house to adjourn after 'fiscal cliff' talks, but, before taking up a much broader $51 billion aid package for
victims. It was "disappointing and disgusting to
watch," said New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, blaming "the toxic
internal politics of the House majority." Sandy
better than the duplicity we saw on display," he said, adding, "Shame
on Congress." Christie said he had
tried to reach Boehner on Tuesday night after the latter canceled a vote on the
aid bill, which had already been approved by the Senate. "He did not take
my calls," said Christie. New Jersey
In a news conference, Christie said he joined people of his state in feeling "betrayed" and added that the move summarizes "why the American people hate Congress."
In a statement, Christie and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo wrote: "This failure to come to the aid of Americans following a severe and devastating natural disaster is unprecedented. The fact that days continue to go by while people suffer, families are out of their homes, and men and women remain jobless and struggling during these harsh winter months is a dereliction of duty. "
The plan being considered by the House Friday would send $9 billion in immediate assistance for floor insurance for
victims. The other,
broader, $51 billion aid package will be tackled by lawmakers on January 15. My question is, why does it have to wait?
These people are suffering and in immediate need. Take a look at how conditions
in some of the affected areas look NOW!
Many of us come from these east coast areas and have family and friends still living in deplorable conditions. Members of our own DRL staff have suffered great damage and hardship due to
My sister still lives in Sandy Brooklyn. Luckily,
she lives in what was Zone 2 and sustained little damage. She drove to our
childhood home in and called me almost
in tears. The home we grew up in was gutted and had a bright orange paper taped
to the front. Most of the houses were destroyed or so damaged they were
uninhabitable. Our childhood friends’ homes in what we called “the courts” were
demolished. The beautiful, historic Sheepshead
Avenue, the heart of
had boats up on the street. The footbridge was under destroyed and large
deposits of sludge formed on the sides. Sheepshead Bay
The story is even worse in Long Island, Breezy Point, the
Jersey Shore, parts of , and other northeaster areas.
And now they deal with dirt, filth, rubble, and on top of that – snow and cold.
How can members of the House go home to their comfortable air conditioned or
heated homes with their electricity, food, and family intact when they know so
many are going without all these things? Connecticut
And what about FEMA? Don’t even get me started! An untold number of storm victims have been rejected for aid by FEMA for a host of reasons that range from the ridiculous to the confounding. One engaged couple happens to have the same last name and date of birth, though not related at all. FEMA denied them saying they must be related, even though they had proof that it was not true. It seems that FEMA started just sending our form rejections without even finding out what insurance was covering or not.
WHAT CAN WE DO? We need to keep reminding
that we want quick action and no excuses. Haven’t they had enough practice with
the major hurricanes in Washington Florida and to have
legislation in place to allow for quick and decisive action to provide
emergency relief as well as long term assistance????? New Orleans
Here is a link to help you find your representative.
Send them a message saying you want immediate action taken. When a vote is taken on January 15th for a relief bill for the northeast,(as promised) let’s tell them to make sure there is no red tape that will keep the money from being distributed immediately.
Also- keep all those affected by this storm in your thoughts and prayers, as well as these politicians that have the power to help them. Pray that our leaders will choose people over profit, Americans over avarice, and assistance over ambition.
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