Cultural Impact On Hurricane Katrina

Decent Essays

Hurricane Katrina was one of the most devastating natural disasters on record in the United States (Skinner, 2006) In August of 2005, Hurricane Katrina made landfall along the Gulf Coast destroying buildings, homes and communities (Skinner, 2006). Storm surges and levee failures resulted in an estimated $108 billion in physical property damage, specifically in the areas of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama (Skinner, 2006). Furthermore, Katrina proved itself to be one of the deadliest disasters in U.S. history as it claimed the lives of more than 1,800 people (Skinner, 2006).
The impact of natural disasters is often discussed in the context of physical destruction, economic or financial consequences, or loss of human lives. While all of these factors are certainly important in gaining a complete understanding of the devastation caused by natural disasters, the psychological impact these traumatic events have on survivors is often overlooked. Likewise, it is essential to consider the impact that local culture impact the government’s response to disasters such as Hurricane Katrina in order to understand why black residents reported higher incidences of psychological distress than any other racial group. The areas most profoundly impacted by Hurricane Katrina have a history rooted deeply in racial discrimination and segregation (Chia-Chen Chen, Keith, Airriess, & Leong, 2007). Understanding this cultural history is essential in gaining a complete and comprehensive view on why

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