Oct 3, 2022

Biden Admin Says Hurricane Relief Will Be 'Based on Equity'

As Florida begins its recovery process after the historic storm, Vice President Kamala Harris said the Biden administration would focus on helping minorities first.
Biden Admin Says Hurricane Relief Will Be 'Based on Equity'

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What happened? On Friday, Vice President Harris said that low-income communities, communities of color, and women are most affected by “climate change” disasters like hurricanes and that the administration will prioritize them to ensure “equity.”

When thinking about equity, think of affirmative action. Instead of weighing college or job applications based on merit or skill, affirmative action is the practice of prioritizing race and other demographic factors in the decision-making process.

How would this apply to disaster relief? Aid is disbursed based on demographic factors like race, gender, and income status instead of the level of need different communities face or the amount of damage certain communities experience.

Equity normalized race-based relief during the pandemic: In one of the most egregious cases of race-based relief, New York health guidelines said that nonwhites were eligible for lifesaving treatment while whites were not. Hospitals in Utah, New York, Illinois, Missouri, and Wisconsin all used race as a factor for treatment eligibility for COVID-19. Government relief for farmers, businesses, and immunization followed the same principles.

Will Hurricane Ian relief be race-based? A representative for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis quickly dismissed Harris’ comments and said that Hurricane relief was available to all Floridians, regardless of race or background.

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