Josh Lockwood responds:

Josh Lockwood

The American Red Cross is committed to helping residents recover from Superstorm Sandy and has helped connect thousands of households with vital assistance. This includes case management to address their needs, referrals to different sources of support and, where appropriate, financial assistance through our Move-in-Assistance Program (MIAP).

The Red Cross is reviewing its Sandy cases to ensure that people receive the help they need. The Red Cross has been communicating with Ms. Fernandez since mid-August to review her circumstances and discuss resources that may be available to her. If residents have questions about the program and their situation, they are encouraged to call 1-877-RED CROSS (1-877-733-2767) option #.


Posted on September 20, 2013
Discussion
  • laura divito LONG BEACH, NY
    • over 1 year ago

    Josh I called the number and was told they could not tell me anything about my application with the red cross. So why are you posting this phone number when it is unless.

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  • Ben Smilowitz ROCKVILLE, MD
    • over 1 year ago

    RESPONSE FROM DISASTER ACCOUNTABILITY PROJECT

    American Red Cross continues to dance around the fact that as many as 1,000 households experienced a sudden reversal in their eligibility for its Move In Assistance Program (MIAP) on May 6, 2013.

    Rosaline began her interactions with American Red Cross in February 2013 when she was staying in a hotel after losing her home to Sandy in late October 2012. In February, American Red Cross told Rosaline that she was eligible for and would receive rental and furniture assistance and that she could search for a suitable apartment. Red Cross provided Rosaline with forms for a future landlord to complete. Rosaline finally found a place in April and submitted the paperwork as instructed. She didn't hear back from Red Cross until June, when she was told that she was no longer eligible for rental assistance. Families across New York are telling similar stories. In fact, Red Cross staff were so upset by the changes, they leaked documents and the names of hundreds of impacted Red Cross clients to Disaster Accountability Project for the purpose of investigation and exposure.

    These changes are well documented in internal documents leaked by Red Cross staff and authenticated in a Wall Street Journal story on July 17, 2013. (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323993804578612203455137238.html)

    The allegations of Red Cross’ gross mismanagement of its Sandy recovery program has prompted both the New York Attorney General's Office and members of Congress to become involved. Josh Lockwood, CEO of Red Cross in Greater New York, recently told Congressional staffers that his organization would honor past promises of eligibility and assistance.

    American Red Cross must actively follow through on that promise and reach out to everyone impacted by the May 6, 2013 rule changes, re-open their files, and consider them for assistance. Red Cross knows which Sandy survivors met with case managers, whether they were provided tax forms for contractors or landlords to complete, and told to collect time-consuming estimates for repairs, furniture and appliances. These paper trails serve as strong indicators that these survivors were deemed eligible for MIAP assistance before May 6.

    It is not enough for Red Cross to contact only the individuals who signed on to Disaster Accountability Project’s Complaint (http://www.disasteraccountability.org/blog2/2013/07/dap-rebuts-the-red-cross-response-to-complaint/) to ask what they need; that is not acting in good faith on the Red Cross promise to members of Congress. If Red Cross CEOs Ms. McGovern and Mr. Lockwood truly care about Sandy survivors and the intent of their many generous donors, they must restore the original eligibility requirements of the Move-In Assistance Program and actively re-engage as many as 1,000 or more impacted households.

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