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Contribution to Book
Legislation and Criminalization Impacting Renters Displaced by Katrina
in LAW AND RECOVERY FROM DISASTER: HURRICANE KATRINA (2009)
  • Eloisa C Rodriguez-Dod
  • Olympia Duhart
Abstract
Even today, more than two years after Katrina laid waste to the Gulf Region, it is hard, if not impossible, for many people to return home. The powerful storm decimated parts of Mississippi, Alabama, and Louisiana. It also displaced a record number of men, women, and children. Some estimates are as high as 800,000.
But while governmental agencies, volunteer efforts, and charities have rushed to rebuild the homes of those displaced by the storm, a huge number of Hurricane Katrina victims have been left with little or no assistance. Beyond the camera lens and often overlooked in the vivid portrayals of hurricane damage are renters, who comprise almost half of those displaced by Hurricane Katrina. Renters: are often last in line for government benefits and other assistance.
Moreover, the hostility to renter's rights that continues to pervade the community. after Katrina has created additional obstacles for low-income renters attempting to resettle in the area. Further, even one-time homeowners have been forced to turn to rental housing as the long, slow recovery assistance process works its way through the region.
The difficulties facing renters in the New Orleans region after the storm are emblematic of the difficulties confronting many “evacuees” who are forced to find temporary housing following a disaster. The hurdles facing renters in the region are varied and extensive. Among the obstacles for renters in the New Orleans
region are the scarcity of land on the south shore of Lake Ponchartrain, increases in labor and material costs for repairs, higher insurance, infrastructure uncertainty, rental property inflation, poverty, construction problems, zoning restrictions, and, criminalization. Some of these problems can serve as a "snapshot" of sorts for the obstacles for renters who must find housing following a temporary, unforeseen displacement.

Keywords
  • Hurricane Katrina,
  • Law and Recovery,
  • housing,
  • Natural disasters,
  • disaster relief,
  • law and legislation
Disciplines
Publication Date
2009
Editor
Robin Paul Malloy
Publisher
Ashgate Pub.
ISBN
9780754675006
Citation Information
Olympia Duhart and Eloisa C. Rodriguez-Dod, Legislation and Criminalization Impacting Renters Displaced by Katrina, in LAW AND RECOVERY FROM DISASTER: HURRICANE KATRINA, (Robin Paul Malloy ed., Ashgate Pub., 2009).