The myth of the lazy Katrina survivor

Cross-posted on the Brave New Films blog.

Not-so-lazy Hurricane Katrina Survivor

A recent study based on a Washington Post/Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation poll concluded that the portrayal of Hurricane Katrina evacuees who did not leave New Orleans before the storm as lazy and reliant on government aid is inaccurate.

Nearly 70 percent of those surveyed were employed before the storm, with half of respondents holding full-time jobs. And 60 percent of evacuees polled were looking for jobs at the time of the survey.

"…lazy and reliant on government aid…" That's the same thing ignorant people think about poor Black folks in general, isn't it? I guess I should start believing in coincidences.

One Love. One II.

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About Garlin Gilchrist II

I am the City of Detroit's first ever Deputy Technology Director for Civic Community Engagement. My job is to open up the city's public data and information for the consumption and benefit of all Detroiters. I currently live in Detroit, my hometown, with my beautiful wife Ellen and our twins Garlin III and Emily Grace. I'm from Detroit. I created Detroit Diaspora, and was formerly the National Campaign Director at I also co-hosted The #WinReport on "The Good Fight," a an award winning, nationally syndicated radio show that was one of Apple's Best of 2013. After graduating with degrees in Computer Engineering and Computer Science from the University of Michigan, I became a Software Engineer at Microsoft. By day, I helped build SharePoint into the fastest growth product in the company's history. On my personal time, I sought out opportunities to connect my technical skills with community building efforts across the country. This led to my co-founding The SuperSpade: Black Thought at the Highest Level, a leading Black political blog. I served as Social Media Manager for the 2008 Obama campaign in Washington, and then became Director of New Media at the Center for Community Change. I spent two years creating and implementing a strategy for the Center to take it's 40 years of community organizing experience into the digital age. I speak before diverse audiences on effective & responsive government, empowerment in revolutionary new organizing spaces, increasing civic engagement & participation through emerging technologies and protecting civil rights in the age of the Internet. Full bio here.

2 responses to “The myth of the lazy Katrina survivor”

  1. Amber says :

    Including myself. The media has truly exerted its muscle in the case of Katrina survivors. From looter to liberator to lazy. They are breeders of the lull of life, no. That portrayal has heavily shaped the aftermath, the recovery process, that we’ve had to maneuver like an obstacle course. Mind control is alive and the only remedy is a shift of consciousness. A shift in the ability to perceive. Yours truly,
    -Survivor for life. Not just Storms

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