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Home for the Holidays - In a FEMA Trailer

December 21, 2006

It's the second holiday season since Hurricane Katrina struck and thousands of survivors are once again celebrating in a FEMA trailer. Recovery experts urge Ohioans and the country as a whole not to forget the Gulf Coast this Christmas. Amy Liu with the Brookings Institution says things are going far more slowly than anyone anticipated and housing shortages are still a top problem.

"Because of the limited supply of housing at this time, even when people want to come back, they're having a really hard time finding places to live."

Liu says Katrina lessons are still being learned and people across the country need to monitor the recovery progress.

Malaak Compton-Rock, wife of actor Chris Rock, participated in a Children's Defense Fund tour this month for prominent African-American women. She saw first-hand the shortage of schools, medical services and mental health care.

"Children left in Louisiana are trying to go to school, trying to feed themselves and being raised by older sisters or young aunts."

The Brookings Institution's "Katrina Index" can be seen at

Rob Ferrett/Eric Mack, Public News Service - OH