Preserving Assets in Low-Income Communities Affected by Disaster
Rausch, Christina; Windley, Tiki
MDC helps organizations and communities close gaps that separate people from opportunities and helps people to try to find a path out of poverty through education, work, and asset-building. The group has been active in disaster preparedness for low-income communities, which are typically less prepared and suffer greater loss. Preparation is a way that people can build and preserve their assets in the face of disaster. Many low-income people own businesses and cannot recover after a disaster. When a disaster hits a small business, people become unemployed, which leads to less consumer spending, making it tough on the community because the tax base decreases. The barriers to resilience in low-income communities include lack of access to capital and affordable insurance. MDC took a community development approach to creating disaster preparedness in low-income communities. They identify barriers for socially vulnerable communities and came up with solutions . They recommended improvement to land-use planning in hazardous areas and sufficient buy-outs when necessary. There is a need to reduce the costs of mitigation and provide insurance-sponsored mitigation. The researchers suggested developing relationships with trusted community agents, more effective disaster plans, and expanding access to financial products for recovery. Public–private partnerships and microloans could be critical in recovery for low-income communities.