It has been three months since Hurricane Sandy devastated Staten Island, and still hundreds of families in our neighborhoods and congregations remain without access to basic needs, including safe housing, heat, water and electricity. With the worst of the winter months yet to come, families across Staten Island are living in unsafe conditions and face a mounting public health crisis from the growing mold epidemic. A deep uncertainty pervades the coastal areas of Staten Island. Homeowners want to rebuild but do not know whether they will be barred from returning to their homes. FEMA deadlines, though extended, still loom ahead and FEMA representatives are beginning to leave the devastated neighborhoods before our communities are on a safe and steady path to recovery.
We, the undersigned clergy and community leaders from Staten Island, request that our elected representatives and local, state and federal government address the issues and concerns described below.