The poor and less powerful, even when visible and loud, are often ignored

roberta avilaBy Roberta Avila
Originally published in the Sun Herald, August 24th, 2010

In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina I became the director for the Mississippi Coast Interfaith Disaster Task Force and was thrown headlong into disaster recovery work.

Church World Service’s manual on Faith-Based Disaster Long Term Recovery became my guide. I read the entire manual in one sitting and I recall being struck by these words in the first chapter: “The poor and less powerful are often ignored even when they are visible and loud. Even when they are seen and heard, they still may get a smaller portion of assistance than the rich and powerful.”

I was determined that night to prevent this sad prophecy. Nevertheless, five years post-Katrina these words ring true.

Read the rest of Roberta Avila's opinion in the Sun Herald.

Roberta Avila is executive director of the Steps Coalition.
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