Skip to comments.Storms Expose Red Cross Sensitivity Gaps
Posted on 12/05/2005 8:50:02 AM PST by SmoothTalker
In large Red Cross shelters, where most volunteers were white, the mostly minority evacuees "felt like they were being herded like cattle," said Rev. Anthony Evans of the National Black Church Initiative.
In the aftermath of the storms, minority evacuees said they encountered many problems in Red Cross shelters. Evacuees who spoke little or no English -- Hispanic and Asian immigrants along the Gulf Coast, as well as French-speaking members of the Houma United Nation tribe in Louisiana -- struggled to make themselves understood because there were so few translators.
Some minority groups complained that shelters were set up in white neighborhoods, far from minority communities.
Rep. Grace F. Napolitano (D-Calif.), chairwoman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, said members questioned Evans at their meeting about the Red Cross's lack of outreach to Hispanic communities and Hispanic legislators. "There was heat," Napolitano said.
"Just as Katrina pulled the covers off the treatment of vulnerable populations, I think it also pulled the covers off the Red Cross and showed they're not used to -- in this country -- dealing with communities of color in deep need," said Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, which also met with the relief group.
According to the organization's most recent survey, 5 percent of its volunteers are black, 2 percent are Hispanic and 2 percent are of Asian origin. Recent data show that black people make up about 13 percent of the U.S. population, Hispanics about 14 percent and Asians about 4 percent.
"The volunteers that are there," Pogue said, "are well-meaning, well-trained and well-disciplined. [But] they do not fully appreciate the differences that other people bring to the party."
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
These quotes especially made me mad.
"In large Red Cross shelters, where most volunteers were white, the mostly minority evacuees "felt like they were being herded like cattle," said Rev. Anthony Evans of the National Black Church Initiative."
" "Just as Katrina pulled the covers off the treatment of vulnerable populations, I think it also pulled the covers off the Red Cross and showed they're not used to -- in this country -- dealing with communities of color in deep need," said Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, which also met with the relief group."
" "The volunteers that are there," Pogue said, "are well-meaning, well-trained and well-disciplined. [But] they do not fully appreciate the differences that other people bring to the party." "
Exactly, you can't force more minorities to volunteer. My mother saw the need and went down there for two weeks, instead of sitting around and complaining. How long did Rev. Evans volunteer?
The Red Cross is filled with White volunteers because blacks dont volunteer in enough strength to be noticed.
Look at most of your volunteer agencies out there and you will see the ones who dont get paid are mostly white . Oh yes even volunteer agencies like the Red Cross have paid people.
Next what happened to the old saw: Beggars cant be choosers.
They should take what they get and be damned grateful for it instead of pissing and moaning.
Thousands of those "victims" were able workers. They should have been taking care of/sharing with others. Are you telling me these people didn't have a 3 day food supply with them, for "at the very least", their children. The free give a way just ahead makes people stupid.
Some people need to be thankful for what little they get. Because it could have been nothing at all. And that would have been racist because nobody cared enough to help.
I am tired of my generosity being taken for granted as an entitlement by freeloaders.
Charity is not a means of support but a tool of recovery. People need to get up off of their fat lazy asses and help themselves.
Good for your mother! I came very close to volunteering. I wish I had gone down, but I'm self employed and if I don't do my job, it won't get done so I couldn't take off the time. Of course perhaps its better I didn't. I'd have been very pissed off if I heard sour grapes after driving a thousand miles, and losing thousands of dollars worth of profits to come down to help these people. And you wonder why these evacuees are starting to wear out their welcome all over the place!
Load of c-garbage, indeed. What about what they DID provide? I only hear about how it wasn't PERFECT. Expectations/ disappointments. Life is tough. Bring your own translator and your own ethnic food then. Dang!
Welcome to the United States...the only country where the poor people suffer from obesity.
Ever wonder why you never see black Americans working in aid agencies in African nations?
THAT's a massive 10-4! I too was down there and we worked out behinds off. WE were most certainly not perfect, and we may have been somewhat ham-handed from time to time. But considering what these whiners paid for our work and what we got paid, I think they made out like bandits.
We had people (of all racial backgrounds) who had been "outplaced" in FEMA housing sneaking back in to get medical treatment and meals, and just to hang out. We had people who were getting the best diet and medical attention that they had ever gotten in their lives, and since we were allegedly a short term shelter, we had to get pretty firm about getting them to make arrangments to leave.
We worked 12 hour shifts. If at the end of one of those shifts one of these arrogant, complaining parasites had complained to me about my goddam lack of sensitivity I would have -- well, probably been deservedly arrested for aggravated assault and battery.
Mind you, for other reasons, come the next disaster I will try to find a group other than the ARC to work with, but when the poor huddled masses trample each other to get our services and then complain because the food isn't exactly to their liking or we don't understand their quaint local customs .... pfah!
I have heard just about enough! I have a great idea. Let's close the Red Cross down and let these people fend for themselves.
"I have heard just about enough! I have a great idea. Let's close the Red Cross down and let these people fend for themselves."
I would have loved to have seen how black america and hispanic america would have responded to a disaster like this without any help.
Forgot the Barf Alert.
That's a keeper!
In the early days following Katrina there was an urgent plea: "Send more plus size clothing".
Just more complaining graduates from the University of Welfare. I think that they need t-shirts that say "Please do more for me than I am willing to do for myself....so that I can sit on my ass and complain"
I have had it right up to my eardrums with the whiners. How dare they whine about their care when there was care provided. What difference does it make what color the skin is? They had better be grateful for what they got FOR FREE.
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