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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tenneseans, I hope there's no disaster, but if there is, you're welcome.

 In 2005, there was a hurricane which forever changed New Orleans. But not only that, it woke up many people who were in the business of ensuring that poor people affected by those disasters had access to funds and services to which they were due by their government, their employers, et cetera. My wife was one of those people. As far as I can cobble together, disaster legal services was a much more organized and effective years before that, and it went in to a bit of a decline. Until we met Katrina.

So my wife, a former disaster legal aid attorney, asked if there was a way I could help coordinate communication between different groups. "Something like a listserv." I still find it adorable that she calls it a listserv. So I set up a mailing list so people around the country could share information. Nothing much, really, but it helped get people together.

I have come to find out that the Memphis Bar association has a nice condensed disaster relief legal assistance reference guide for volunteer attorneys. Stuff like this:
Q. 7 I received my check for rental assistance, but there are no places to rent. 

If you are eligible for housing assistance from FEMA but are unable to find a rental house or apartment within a reasonable commuting distance of your damaged home, please contact FEMA at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or visit a nearby Disasater Recovery Center. FEMA will evaluate your situation, and, if appropriate, may authorize a travel trailer or mobile home.
Going back to the title page it says:
With special thanks to the following contributors:

...
Robert Konigsberg
I didn't do much, but it's nice that it helped.

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