Wednesday, August 31, 2005


I am not going to turn this into one of those Oprah inspired 'I am thankful for...' posts.

However reading a message board for people living with lupus today I again realised the differences faced by people in the areas affected by Katerina to that which might be experienced in other countries with better welfare systems.

One of the women on the messageboard lives 5 miles from New Orleans on her own with her dog. She has severe lupus and minimal health benefits. She could not go to the shops to stock up on supplies before Katerina hit. Her neighbours have evacuated and her only family live thousands of miles away. She has no transport and there is nowhere to buy supplies and she can't move about. There is now martial law in the area she lives in and no social services operating whilst there is a search and recovery operation underway. There is a hole in the side of her small house and she can't drink the water as its polluted.

This is a dire situation and little hope of improvement in the coming days and there are power outages so she has very limited internet access.

However she is getting support and someone from a lupus group is going to check in with her and get her moved to somewhere else if needs be - and she can bring her dog too. Randy is an assistance dog, another lifeline which will need to be minded to if H is to get through this.

One thing I have noted from the coverage of Katerina and its effects is the existing poverty in the areas affected and that this will be no ordinary clean up operation in comparison to previous hurricanes. Many people were disaffected before this and reaching out to them and providing help is not going to be easy. Some questioned why people stayed put and did not leave - the answer is fairly easy - they could not afford to move anywhere else and had nowhere else to go.


Post a Comment

<< Home