Commentary

Sandy Victims Still Stranded As ‘Red Tape’ Hinders Help From FEMA

By Joe Schoffstall and Dan Joseph | December 26, 2012 | 9:47am EST
Nearly two months after homes in Staten Island, NY were devastated by Hurricane Sandy, residents say they’re still struggling with red tape as they try to get the government to help.
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FEMA “really hasn’t done much, if anything, and they’re making people go through a whole bunch of bureaucratic tape,” one resident told MRCTV.

‘They need all the help they can get, and the red tape doesn’t help anyone. It only hurts and hinders and grows the problem,” another said.

Victims are shuffled from one desk to another for registration, an identification check, and one-on-one interviews – then referred to something called a “Mitigation Desk,” a FEMA official at a local Disaster Recovery Center explained to MRCTV.

“They have to go through SBA and see if they’re eligible or not. And, then, they come back to the grant program if they’re not eligible. So, one way or another, they’re going to be given the help for repair, replacement,” the FEMA official assured MRCTV.

The Disaster Recovery Center has since been relocated “before the bad weather hits.”

But, the Sandy-ravaged residents still remain. And wait.

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