Monday, April 10, 2006

9th Ward ACORN Community Forum Draws 250 Residents

On March 26th, 250 residents of the 9th Ward in New Orleans participated in a community planning meeting co-sponsored by the Cornell University Department of City and Regional Planning, the Louisiana State University School of Architecture, and State Representative Charmaine Marchand.

Residents came to register their intent to return and to voice their concerns about rebuilding. During the day, residents formed committees to work on rebuilding plans, and they met directly with planners and other residents about community needs.

Also present were City Council member Cynthia Lewis and City Council President Oliver Thomas, who both committed to authoring a city ordinance making it law for anyone with a city contract to pay a living wage.

In addition to discussing the future, 9th Ward residents documented their stories and contributed to the design of a memory map to record pre-Katrina 9th Ward neighborhood characteristics and experiences. An Information Center provided updates and assisted residents in local support services, and ACORN tax preparers were on hand to prepare taxes for free while residents participated in the meetings and workshops.

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