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Sat Nov 3, 2012, 04:19 PM

 

The New Yorker: Occupy Sandy

Stop The Wars ‏@sickjew

"Occupy, as you would expect, has a different style." Occupy Sandy - posted by Larissa MacFarquhar
http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2012/11/occupy-sandy.html

The Red Cross doesn’t accept individual donations of household goods—these things, it says, need to be cleaned, sorted, and repackaged, and all that takes up more time than they’re worth. It asks for financial donations only. New York Cares requires its volunteers to go through orientation sessions, all of which are full till late November. But Occupy, as you would expect, has a different style. For instance: as soon as it was safe to go outside after the storm, first thing Tuesday morning, Michael Premo and a couple of people he knew got in a car and drove over to Red Hook. Premo is a freelance artist who lives in Bedford-Stuyvesant and just turned thirty. He was at Zuccotti Park every day last fall, though he never slept there, and after the park encampment was disbanded he kept in touch with the movement. There are big neighborhood assemblies in Sunset Park and Red Hook, smaller ones elsewhere in Brooklyn. Many meet each week, organizing around local issues—rent strikes in Sunset Park, anti-gentrification in Crown Heights.

Premo worked in New Orleans after Katrina and he had a sense that right after a disaster a city’s efforts were focused on search and rescue, rather than providing supplies. He thought this was a gap Occupy could fill. He knew some people at Red Hook Initiative, a community center on Hicks Street, so he and his friends drove over there and asked what was needed—food, light, blankets. Food most of all. He and some other people got back in the car and drove to the Rockaways. He isn’t sure when they got there—probably Tuesday evening. Houses were still on fire. They walked around and asked people what they needed most.

Meanwhile, organizing was going on: we need to make food, we need a kitchen. The Red Hook Initiative has a kitchen but it’s too small. Phone calls. There’s a church on Fourth Avenue at 55th Street in Sunset Park, St. Jacobi, whose pastor likes Occupy—they have a big kitchen. They also have a hall that can be used as a headquarters to receive donations. Done—meet there. Get in the car. Somebody set up a website, there needs to be a short, clear list of what is needed and where to take it. Make sure it stays updated. Phone calls. We need volunteers to sort donations. We need sandwiches made. We need tinfoil to wrap the sandwiches in. We need people to drive out to Zone A to deliver supplies. People are running low on gas, not everyone can get to Sunset Park. Phone calls. Satellite drop-off centers for donations established in Fort Greene, Park Slope, Williamsburg, and Bed-Stuy. Phone calls. Coordinate with people in Manhattan—CAAAV, an Asian American organization on Hester Street, is asking for volunteers in Chinatown. Can anyone get to Chinatown? The people at Good Old Lower East Side need volunteers to knock on doors in housing projects to see if old or sick people need help—they’re doing it between twelve and six every day and they need as many people as they can get (we’re sending hundreds). Someone needs to go out to the Rockaways and figure out a distribution center. Maybe St. Francis de Sales. It’s on 129th Street. Remember, phones don’t work there. Neither do traffic lights.

(More at the link.)


Read more http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2012/11/occupy-sandy.html#ixzz2BC0pjcfw

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Reply The New Yorker: Occupy Sandy (Original post)
Fire Walk With Me Nov 2012 OP
sabrina 1 Nov 2012 #1

Response to Fire Walk With Me (Original post)

Sat Nov 3, 2012, 05:46 PM

1. That is excellent, especially that they are going door to door to check on the

elderly and infirm. NYC has a record of old people dying alone in their apartments even when there is no storm. Some from not having heat or the ability to go buy food etc.

OWS established relationships early on with many of NY's Community Service activists and it's great to see them coordinating their efforts right now.

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