Nonprofits or Public Works to Rebuild Post-Sandy New York? Lessons From Post-Katrina New Orleans
Bluestockings (172 Allen St., Manhattan)
New Orleans, seven years after Hurricane Katrina, is a capitalist paradise – and workers’ nightmare – of privatized public services where 100,000 people, disproportionally black and poor, have not been able to return to the city. Many folks see a similar capitalist disaster underway in post-Sandy New York. Can nonprofits present a people’s alternative? Jay Arena, author of “Driven From New Orleans: How Nonprofits Betray Public Housing and Promote Privatization” critiques this notion and explains how a movement demanding a mass public works program – as advocated by New Orleans’ post-Katrina public housing movement – can win a just reconstruction of New Orleans, New York and the world. Eric Lerner is a veteran of the 1968 Columbia University student strike and a longtime labor and anti-war activist. Nellie Hester Bailey is a human rights activist who has worked in peace and justice movements for over forty years.