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Thomas J. Durant, Jr. Ph.D. Louisiana State University.

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Presentation on theme: "Thomas J. Durant, Jr. Ph.D. Louisiana State University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Thomas J. Durant, Jr. Ph.D. Louisiana State University

2 Outline  Purpose  Key Facts surrounding Hurricane Katrina  Definition of Disaster  Theoretical Perspectives  Social Supports  Social Networks & Vulnerability  Conclusion

3 Purpose  To assess individual, family, & community factors that influence the vulnerability of the elderly to Hurricane Katrina

4 The Elderly & Hurricane Katrina Here are the facts:  50% of the 1000 deaths in New Orleans were persons 75+ in age  64% were over 60 years of age  36% died in their homes  22% died in hospitals  12% died in nursing homes  70% of nursing homes were not evacuated

5 Disaster An event concentrated in time and space in which a society, or subdivision of a society, incurs loss of its members Results in the destruction of physical components Involves the disruption of the social structure

6 Theoretical Perspectives  Social Capital Perspective  Multiple Jeopardy Perspective

7 Social Capital Perspective  One’s social networks with family, friends, and social agencies can serve as a source of assistance during and after a disaster.

8 Premise Weak Social Networks + Multiple Disadvantages Increased Risk of High Vulnerability =

9 Multiple Jeopardy Perspective Individuals or families with multiple disadvantages have greater vulnerability to the effects of a natural disaster EXAMPLE: Elderly Persons ○ Poor/Poverty ○ In Poor Health ○ Widowed or Living Alone ○ Concentrated Poverty ○ Socially Isolated Neighborhoods

10 Social Supports  85% of elderly person received support from family members  15% from friends  13% from paid sources  10% from friends  85% of older adults received support from family members  50% from friends  20% local & state agencies  20% federal agencies  10% self-help or private sources U.S. Elderly PopulationKatrina Elderly Survey

11 Social Networks & Vulnerability  Elderly adults depend on family & caretakers to make decisions in disasters  Elderly adults with chronic health or disabilities depend more on social networks

12 Social Networks & Vulnerability  Older adults with strong social networks were more likely to evacuate  Older adults with strong economic resources, social networks, & public assistance had lower vulnerability to the effects of disasters  EXAMPLE: Rev. Willie Walker

13 Individual FactorsIndicators HomeownershipDo not own home Type of residenceSingle-story house Amount of MoneyLittle or no savings Automobile ownershipOwn or do not own a car TechnologiesNo phone, etc. Personal Identification/Contacts None available No. & Type of Internal & External Contacts Little or none Age & Health Status Institutional DependencyHigh

14 Individual FactorsIndicators Level of Education & Occupation Low Culture & BeliefsTraditions Property InsuranceNone Location of Residence (SES, Proximity to Shelter, etc.) Not Near Shelter Health InsuranceNone Emergency SavingsLittle or None Amount of Advance Planning & Preparation Little or None, Insufficient

15 Family FactorsIndicators Family network of children & relatives Weak-strained relationships Family SizeSmall, Fragmentation Proximity of children & relatives Distance from relatives SES of children & other relatives Lower income levels

16 Community FactorsIndicators Social StratificationConcentrated Poverty Available Community Support Systems Resource Availability Emergency SheltersDistant Proximity Communication SystemUndeveloped Communities Crime, Security, & Law Enforcement High Crime Area Ecological CharacteristicsFlood-Prone Areas Civility & Civic Actions of Neighbors Lack of Civility Urbanization & Population Density High Density

17 Summary  Social Networks  Multiple Jeopardy  Older adults with multiple jeopardies and low social networks were more vulnerable to Hurricane Katrina  Older adults with access to strong social networks and fewer risks were less vulnerable

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