Hurricane Katrina Moms and job discrimination
Today on All Things Considered, NPR featured a moving piece about the two sides of Hurricane Katrina evacuees relocating in Houston. Some of the 90,000 people who have resettled in Houston are doing well; two years later, others have still not found security. Mothers in particular seem to be suffering.
Lorenthia Richardson is a former nursing students and store manager who is sharing an apartment with three female relatives and their 14 children. NPR reporter Wade Goodwyn's summary of Richardson's situation caught my eye:
"Richardson knows how to dress and act for the professional world. That's not her problem. Her problem is that she is a black, single mother from New Orleans. For two full years, Richardson has been unable to land a job, despite more than 50 separate attempts."
It is unconscionable to think that with all that hurricane survivors face, racism and job discrimination against mothers would keep them from finding a stable situation for their families. Richardson's story may yet have a happy ending, as two weeks ago she landed a full-time job with benefits, along with an opportunity to resume her nursing studies. But we should not forget the ongoing needs of relocate families and the motherhood-related obstacles that add to their challenges.
Here's the link to the transcript and audio download of the All Things Considered report, Houston Holds Hope, Despair for Katrina Evacuees