A report published by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWRP) reveals the ways black women, especially those in public housing, struggled and suffered because of Hurricane Katrina. After interviewing 184 black women in public housing, the institute came away with five major insights dispelling myths about hurricane recovery. While some black women did find better lives in other cities, most of the black women interviewed wanted to come back to New Orleans. But, the report found, this transition was made very difficult because of poor recovery practices that often exacerbated existing inequalities. The report found that most women did not have enough housing to return to; the new housing situation also brought insecurities and a sense of not belonging to one place; and the vouchers provided aren’t covering their daily needs. Further, the public transportation infrastructure makes it even more difficult to get to work, and social safety nets were disrupted, making black women more vulnerable to various kinds of violence. Among IWRP’s recommendations were: improve communication among service providers, expand tenant vouchers, diversify policies for women and inclusion of low income women, and prioritize the voices of low-income women in planning decisions. Photo Credit: REUTERS/Lee Celano