Views of Recovery Ten Years after Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita

08/24/2015

In the news:

The New York Times: Racially Disparate Views of New Orleans’ Recovery After Hurricane Katrina

The Washington Post: White people in New Orleans say they’re better off after Katrina. Black people don’t.

The Advocate: Has New Orleans recovered since Katrina? Depends on who you ask

 

On August 29, 2005, Hurricane Katrina made landfall near the Louisiana-Mississippi border, wreaking havoc along the Gulf Coast. To mark the tenth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, the Reilly Center’s Public Policy Research Lab conducted a survey to understand views of recovery ten years after Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita.

 

Results of the survey show that black and white residents of New Orleans see the progress of recovery very differently since Hurricane Katrina. Almost 80 percent of the city’s white residents feel Louisiana has “mostly recovered,” but 59 percent of blacks say it has “mostly not recovered.” Far more of the city’s white residents see progress in the local economy, the public schools, flood protection and the quality of life in their community than do black residents.

 

“This survey helps us take stock of where we are in our recovery efforts ten years later, said Mike Henderson, research director of the Manship School’s Public Policy Research Lab. “We see a resilient populace, but we also see the significant policy challenges that remain.”

 

“In New Orleans,” he adds, “not everyone has experienced the same recovery.”

 

Across the state, 69 percent of Louisiana residents believe the state has “mostly recovered” from the hurricanes in 2005. In New Orleans, 50 percent of residents say the state has “mostly recovered,” and 45 percent say it has “mostly not recovered.”

 

Statewide, 77 percent said “The government should have done everything it could to help the people whose homes were damaged by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita to move back to their communities after the storms,” but only 38 percent feel “The government did everything it could to help the people whose homes were damaged by Hurricanes Katrina or Rita to move back to their communities after the storms.” The gap between beliefs about what the government should have done and what it did is even larger in New Orleans, where 86 percent say the government should have done everything it could and only 27 percent believe the government did.

 

Henderson will present highlights from the survey at “New Orleans: Ten Years Later,” The Atlantic’s conference on the city’s recovery, to be held at the Sheraton New Orleans Monday, August 24. Henderson’s presentation, with Steve Clemons, The Atlantic’s Washington Editor at Large, will go over the key findings of the survey with a focus on New Orleans.

 

“Our participation in this event, helps remind a national audience of the progress that has been made and the work that remains to be done,” said Henderson.

 

 

About the Louisiana Survey

 

Since 2003, the Louisiana Survey has tracked trends in Louisiana residents’ attitudes about conditions in the state. Additionally, the 2015 edition taps the public’s views of pressing contemporary issues such as strategies for addressing budget shortfalls; tax incentives for economic development; the Common Core State Standards; cost controls for the Taylor Opportunity Program for Students; Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act; race relations and law enforcement; same‐sex marriage; and legalization/decriminalization of marijuana.

 

A copy of the report containing these results is available at www.survey.lsu.edu.

 

For additional information or to schedule an interview, contact Dr. Michael Henderson at mbhende1@lsu.edu.