Nyc Update From The Ground Rixey Browning

New York City, Nov. 1, 2012 — I went down to NYC after the storm on Tuesday, and visited 3 sites. The coastal towns on the barrier islands were definitely hit the worst. Southern Brooklyn is also a bit of a mess, but the Rockaways and Breezy Point were by far the hardest hit.

Red Hook, Brooklyn

The neighborhood was affected by extensive flooding and power loss. As of Tuesday night, some power was being restored, but a large majority of the area was still dark. Community members in conjunction with the Recovers project have set up a space at the Red Hook Initiative (767 Hicks Street, cross streets are Hicks and Mill Street, phone number 718-858-6782) where they are taking donations as well as running a kitchen. A point of concern in Red Hook is the number of residents that live in housing projects with pertinent medical issues who do not have access to care right now.

Breezy Point

The neighborhood was evacuated before the storm. Those who were left were evacuated by FEMA and the NYPD on Tuesday. FEMA and the NYPD were heavily present. The entire town is under 2-3 feet of water. The NYPD seems to be leading the evacuation effort in Breezy Point as well as in other sites around the city. Our favorite caped crusader friends were trucking residents in and out of the community so that they could grab some belongings. As far as I know, no residents have chosen to be noncompliant with the evacuation. It seemed like all the residents were getting out of the community and seeking shelter elsewhere, not sure how much help we could be there at this point.

The Rockaways

The Rockaways are devastated, as I'm sure many of you know. National Guard vehicles were everywhere, as was lots of debris (I'm talking 20 foot yachts in the middle of the street). Some residents have chosen to stay in spite of FEMA and the NYPD trying to evacuate them. These residents are in need of food, water, medical attention, warm clothes … the list goes on. There has also been talk of potential rioting going on in Broad Channel. Last night, the residents of Broad Channel were scheduled to have a meeting with FEMA officials… who didn't show. So they blocked an intersection. Fuck yeah. But the point is that they are angry and don't have the aid they need, so that's an area of interest for us. There has also been a request for medics in the Rockaways in general. I plan on being there this weekend. I'm not sure at this point where there are community spaces set up, but I will find out and report back.

Latest info

Available on the recovers.org websites are lists of needs for Red Hook, Astoria, and Staten Island. Interoccupy.org also has a volunteer hub up, as well as a list of items needed. The Twitter hashtags corresponding with aid right now are #Sandy #SandyAid #SandyVolunteer #VolunteerSandy.

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