For Those Living Paycheck to Paycheck, Sandy Hits Harder

The wealth divide has always existed in New York City, but disasters can amplify the distance between classes. The Big Apple's wealth gap is wider than it has ever been, with disparities rivaling those of sub-Saharan Africa, The New York Times reported. Last year, the wealthiest 20 percent of Manhattan made nearly $400,000 on average, according to census data, while the poorest 20 percent made less than $10,000.

Poorer people are often the most vulnerable during extreme weather conditions, because they have fewer resources to evacuate, less access to storm-resistant shelter and less money to recuperate from the effects of the storm, according to a team of University of California professors who studied the topic in the wake of Katrina. They also found that black, Hispanic, Asian and immigrant communities were hit the hardest. And the most "socially vulnerable" county in the nation to "environmental hazards," in light of these factors? Manhattan, the researchers concluded.

For people like Nana Abukudom, the economic consequences of the storm are sharp, and unforgiving.

"Back home in Ghana, there were no jobs and no work. That's why I'm here," Abukudom said, holding a "BIKE RENTAL" sign. "Now it's very hard here too."

Page
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...
 
See It, Share It
PHOTO: Firefighters rescue a woman who got stuck in a chimney in Thousand Oaks, Calif.
Ventura County Fire Department
PHOTO: Apple Pay is demonstrated at Apple headquarters on Oct. 16, 2014 in Cupertino, Calif.
Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP Photo
PHOTO: Up in Ash: Mount Sinabung Erupting
Tibt Nangin/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
PHOTO: Defendant Jodi Arias testifies about killing Travis Alexander in 2008 during her murder trial in Phoenix, Feb. 20, 2013.
Charlie Leight/The Arizona Republic/AP Photo
PHOTO: Kim Kardashian, Kanye West, their daughter North West and Delphine Arnault attend the Givenchy show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2015, Sept. 28, 2014 in Paris.
Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/French Select/Getty Images