Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Join The Democrats Response

In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, you mobilized to make sure that the Red Cross had the financial resources it needed to respond swiftly. The response was literally overwhelming -- so many donations poured in that their web site struggled to process them.

Since then Americans have seen another kind of disaster unfold. The irresponsible lack of attention by our federal government has led directly to the devastation of communities and the loss of American lives.
The federal response over these crucial first days has been totally unacceptable. There will be a time for a full accounting of the preventable part of this disaster, and those responsible will be held accountable. It will be soon.

But there are lives to save right now and our focus must be steady. People need help right now. And you can be a direct participant in the relief efforts by providing housing for a victim of the disaster.
The vast number of evacuees has triggered a cascading crisis -- the first group of evacuation centers in the Gulf States has been overwhelmed, and the surrounding states have seen their capacity exceeded as well.
Hundreds of thousands of survivors are being transported in small groups to cities and towns across the country. A coalition of groups has put together a web site to collect offers of housing and provide a place for victims to search for help. You can offer shelter -- whether for a few days or a few weeks -- by signing up here:

To support your volunteer housing operation the following steps have been taken:
We are briefing Democratic elected officials on the HurricaneHousing.org program and asking that they treat this as the front-line network of volunteers who are ready and waiting to provide shelter in their jurisdiction.
We have asked outside organizations to direct their members to HurricaneHousing.org to volunteer; those organizations with representatives on the ground have been asked to help victims connect with the housing bank.

We have directed the staff at Democratic Headquarters in Washington to use local volunteers signed up on HurricaneHousing.org as they work with DC emergency response officials to assist hundreds of survivors being transported to the DC Armory, which is located nearby.

In addition to mobilizing our infrastructure to support the housing drive, we have also taken the following steps in the last week:
All DNC fundraising events have been cancelled until further notice and donations are being directed to relief organizations.
The DNC Fall Meeting that had been scheduled to take place this week has been postponed.
All staff have been given leave to participate in relief operations (many are completing Red Cross training this week and will deploy shortly).
The Democratic leadership in Congress has proposed a comprehensive policy package to ensure that victims receive health care, financial assistance and educational and employment opportunities during the crisis (go to www.democrats.org/reliefplan for more).

But more than anything our organization has done, the thousands of acts of compassion by ordinary citizens and a renewed sense of common purpose will be the legacy of this effort.
Our American community will emerge stronger from this crisis.
Thank you for doing what you can.

Governor Howard Dean, M.D.

P.S. -- A number of organizations on the ground still need financial support. You can learn about them here:

Paid for and authorized by the Democratic National Committee, www.democrats.org. This communication is not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.


Blogger Dedanna said...

You might also be interested in, if you haven't seen it already:

The Emerging Democratic Majority: Donkey Rising.

4:30 PM, September 10, 2005  

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