While the Hurricane may have provided an opportunity for these two wealthy men to discuss who does or does not care about black people, or what their political and social legacies will be, it served quite a different function for a few other folks: thousands of people lost their homes, their belongings, their families, and sometimes their lives as a result of the disaster.
The victims of Hurricane Katrina deserve justice, and this week brought them one step closer. As reported by The Root and the Chicago Tribune, Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan announced this week that they will be giving $132 million in federal funds to help poor residents whose homes remain damaged as a result of the catastrophic event.
According to the Mississippi Development Authority, the money for the initiative will come from “reshuffling” funds for other projects planned with federal recovery dollars, and will be used to help folks rebuild damaged homes or find new places to live.
This is an important step, especially given the staggering amount of rebuilding that is still required in the region: The Mississippi Center for Justice estimates that there are still at least 5,000 storm-battered homes statewide, with many more in neighboring state Louisiana.
For more details on some of the politics behind this decision and others affecting Katrina victims, visit the Root.