NYCHA’s Successful Disaster Recovery

Out of the millions of people hit by Superstorm Sandy, many were New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) residents living in some of the hardest hit areas of NYC. But NYCHA showed itself to be able-bodied and efficient in helping residents recover from the disaster.


While getting housing buildings back online, staff members worked tirelessly to pump out salt water, get power back online, and deliver hot meals to elderly residents. NYCHA’s Environmental Coordinator Margarita Lopez even led a group of staff members writing out handwritten notices to tenants since copiers obviously weren’t available with the power still out.


NYCHA Residents were also grateful for the generators in their buildings, which powered overhead lights in lieu of the power outage. The generators also allowed water services to be restored before Con Ed restored power. NYCHA worked with several nonprofits during the disaster as well, such as University Settlement, who helped with the delivery of meals to the elderly.


Serving over a half million residents in the New York area, NYCHA’s quick response to such disasters is vital. It’s heartening to see NYCHA’s own board members, like Margarita Lopez, out and working in the community to identify and fix problems arising from Sandy.


Of course, Margarita Lopez is no stranger to getting to the heart of issues she cares about. She’s been an activist for a number of causes for decades, supporting the homeless and advocating for the rights of the mentally ill, abused women, and LGBT people among many others.


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