Katrina survivor hopes to return home

September 1, 2008 8:30:35 PM PDT
Survivors of Hurricane Katrina in the Bay Area are closely watching Gustav. ABC7 talked with one survivor who has not been able to go home for the past three years.

"I pray for all the folks who are going through what they going through now," said Katrina survivor Diana Evans.

Evans left New Orleans after Katrina struck three years ago, taking her grandson and daughter with her. Her laptop has helped her access New Orleans TV stations on the Web. She knows what New Orleans is going through.

"We went through Katrina. We were on the roof. We went through hell," said Evans.

Katrina forced the Evans family to spend two days and nights on the porch roof of a home waiting for help. The family was relocated to Burlingame. Evans has longed for her home for three years and wonders what the fate will be of those now evacuated because of Gustav.

"See what happens to them in three weeks and in three months -- if these folks are still sitting in Tennessee, in Arkansas and in west Texas," said Evans.

"Are there jobs for them to come back to? Is there health care for them? Are the schools open, the basic infrastructure? And up until the last three years those things have not been in place," said San Jose State University Professor Scott Myers Lipton.

Lipton has studied post-Katrina recovery efforts in New Orlreans. He and his sociology students helped to create the Gulf Coast Civic Works Act. The bill aims to create 100,000 jobs for Gulf Coast residents and evacuees so they can rebuild their communities. Jobs would pay no lower than $15 an hour. He says Congress should pass the bill to help families like the Evans return home.

"I believe that in the most wealthy nation in the world there is no reason why we don't have the right to return to our home," said Evans.


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