As this year marks a decade after Hurricane Katrina, much of New Orleans is still rebuilding and dealing with the aftermath of the storm.
New Orleans Workers’ Center for Racial Justice employee and advocate Latoya Lewis attributes the government’s inadequate recovery plan.
“I think Katrina was… one of the most modern times where this country showed us how they feel about black people and people of color,” Lewis said in an interview with the Huffington Post.
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She said the #BlackLivesMatter movement was long overdue and victims of Katrina actually launched the phrase 10 years ago although it has been laid out more eloquently and caught on more rapidly amid the recent racial injustices that have come about.
Lewis was a high school senior when Katrina hit and she saw firsthand the racial inequalities of the government’s response following the natural disaster.
Lewis’ family was lucky in that they were able to get out of the city in time before they could succumb to the powerful storm, but many others were not.
“People were leaving their homes and really walking into danger because there was nothing provided for us,” Lewis said. "Or if they did stay in their homes, they had to go up on the roof to get some air so yea; you didn’t have to check the color of people’s skin to airlift people off the roof because the majority of people left to die here were black people."