Alan Gomez of USA Today files a report from Tuesday’s Miami-Dade County budget meetings. writing how local residents are growing increasingly frustrated that “government and power officials haven’t yet gotten the region completely up and running.”
“In the days after the storm, families went hungry, elders suffered from the heat, people with diabetes were desperately asking for ice for their insulin, and the level of need was reprehensible,” said Andrea Mercado, executive director of the New Florida Majority, a group that organizes political campaigns focused on poor and minority communities. “It didn’t need to be this way.”
Valencia Gunder echoed those concerns. The community activist estimates that she coordinated 200 volunteers who helped hammer plywood on people’s windows and delivered food and water to poor neighborhoods. She pleaded with commissioners to stop congratulating themselves over their hurricane response and start scrutinizing the gaps in their response that has still left some people without help.
“I do not know the complete protocol for emergency response after a storm, but I really believe that it needs to be revisited now,” Gunder said. “We need to revisit every plan, turn over every page.”