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What can people who care do to help New Orleans and the Gulf Coast?

Ten days ago, workers cleaning a house in New Orleans found a body of a man who died in the flood. He is the twenty-third person found dead from the storm since March.

Over two hundred thousand people have not yet made it back to New Orleans. Vacant houses stretch mile after mile, neighborhood after neighborhood. Thousands of buildings remain marked with brown ribbons where floodwaters settled. Of the thousands of homes and businesses in eastern New Orleans, thirteen percent have been re-connected to electricity.

The mass displacement of people has left New Orleans older, whiter, and more affluent. African-Americans, children, and the poor have not made it back – primarily because of severe shortages of affordable housing.

Thousands of homes remain just as they were when the floodwaters receded – ghost-like houses with open doors, upturned furniture, and walls covered with growing mold.

Yes, the people of New Orleans still need our help. The only thing I can think of is to complain to our elected officials about the way the clean up is being handled. Maybe starting a voting block based on this issue could help, but frankly, the cost to rebuild is far too overwhelming for most everyone effected by the hurricane. We should pray for them and speak up and out for them.