unheard voices from the gulf coast

By now, you've heard about British Petroleum oil spill that has devastated the Gulf Coast region, and the situation only appears to be getting worse. Check out this video to hear from the community facing the reality of this tragedy:

And here's a story on the Gulf Coast disaster, provided by Simon Kim and Vien Truong of Green for All:
Unheard Voices from the Gulf Coast
May 14, 2010

The British Petroleum (BP) oil spill is an environmental, economic and social disaster that is crippling the livelihood of thousands of fishermen, and the economic stability of the entire Gulf Coast region. The Gulf seafood industry is a $3 billion economy and provides a third of all U.S. seafood. There are at least 13,000 commercial fishing vessels registered in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. With federal waters closed in southern Louisiana, fishing communities can't make catch or income.

The oil slick moves closer to shorelines everyday, critically threatening our precious ecosystem and having the potential to wipe out businesses that have been a way of life in the Gulf Coast for over a century.

The Gulf Coast's Vietnamese fishing community faces some of the most daunting challenges. Families are struggling to make ends meet. Many who were in financially difficult times before this crisis are now under threat of losing their homes and their source of income. Already, two families in Biloxi have had their homes foreclosed. They are asking banks for forbearance and asking elected leaders for help.

Boats will be repossessed soon if families cannot make the necessary payments. Tuan Dang, owner of a fishing boat in Biloxi says, "We are in a really difficult position right now. Lawyers... and BP are coming at us. Right now we are going through financial hardship... I don't know what other jobs there are."
This disaster has affected the livelihood of thousands of fishermen -- many of whom are Vietnamese American -- and the economic stability of the entire Gulf Coast region. To support the efforts on the ground, please go to:
Mary Queen of Viet Nam Community Development Coporation, Inc.
Vietnamese American Young Leaders Association of New Orleans
Boat People SOS

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