Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Tell Time Magazine about the Gulf Coast Civic Works Project!

Tell Time Magazine about the Gulf Coast Civic Works Project!

TIME.com is asking readers for their suggestions for how New Orleans can be rebuilt.

This is an opportunity for Gulf Coast Civic Works supporters to have their voice be heard in the mainstream media.

Please visit the link above and tell TIME.com displaced residents need to be able to return home to jobs rebuilding their communities through the Gulf Coast Civic Works Project!

Below is a sample entry. Feel free to cut and paste this and possibly edit with your own thoughts before submitting:

"Two years since Hurricane Katrina and the failures of the federally constructed levee system devastated the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans, as many as 250,000 from New Orleans alone are still internally displaced. Federal dollars remain strangled in the red-tape of slow moving programs built to respond to much smaller disasters while schools, hospitals, and homes continue to lay in disrepair. Its time for a "New Deal" for New Orleans and Gulf Coast.

Gulf Coast residents are developing a bold, realistic plan to help Katrina survivors realize their human right to return and rebuild their communities. The Gulf Coast Civic Works Project (GCCW) calls the federal government hiring 100,000 Katrina survivors to rebuild their homes and communities, similar to the New Deal's WPA. It would provide them with temporary housing, services and job training to help them build and repair houses, schools, parks, flood protection and other public works projects determined by local officials and communities.

The program would be an investment not only in rebuilding hard hit communities in a manner that would allow all of this national disaster's survivors to be able to return home but also an investment in working families which would be empowered with the necessary skills for high wage work helping to rebuild local economies and the middle class.

Louisiana alone suffered $31 billion in damage to infrastructure and public facilities. New Orleans saw 79% of its affordable housing whipped out by the levee breaks. Recently Louisiana predicted it will need 90,000 additional skilled construction workers. Underfunded hands-off federal efforts to date have not sufficiently tackled the many interrelated issues threatening the future of displaced families who want to return and courageous returning families whose communities need additional help. This provides a ripe opportunity for bringing displaced people home and employing them to do this necessary work to rebuild a better Gulf Coast. The United States has not met its human rights obligations to help displaced survivors return and participate in rebuilding their communities.

In other countries across the globe the United States funds similar programs helping displaced people to return to their communities and find work to rebuild their lives and communities after a disaster.

In Iraq the United States' international aid agency, USAID, currently has a program hoping to employ 100,000 displaced Iraqis in temporary public work projects.

Why can't we do the same in for our own displaced citizens?" --Jeffrey Buchanan


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