Sunday, December 20, 2009


I think it's worth pointing out that outside non-profit charities need our support this, and every winter season. This would be when finances dry up and the need in emergency situations can prove life threatening.

The Red Cross has come to the rescue of a family in Olive Bridge recently. Having survived two accounts of fire damage in their home, they are now residing in a motel in Ulster, NY.

Food, clothing and medical needs met, they are secure and I'm sure, thankful for the efforts of the Red Cross and others. The question is, now that they are in this predicament, who is going to help pay for the prolonged expenses while they get back on their feet? If they remain in Ulster, then the town will have to cover half the cost of housing them through the current rules of the County safetynet structure. No doubt the Town Board will freak when they hear this.

For that reason alone, Olive wont want to find adequate housing for them because then Olive taxpayers will have to pay half the costs. Now we see a very real case as to why the safetynet issue in Ulster County has to be addressed. If you somehow find yourself in a tight spot, lose your home and/or job, the towns usually send you to Kingston in hopes to relinquish themselves of the burden of helping the victim. This is where I shudder to think these towns advertise
"Welcome to Friendly ___________" (You fill in the town)

In the coming days and weeks, Red Cross volunteers will continue to work with those affected by the fire and to provide more aid if needed. Volunteers will also assist victims develop a post-disaster plan to get each started on the road to recovery.

A little about the Red Cross:
The American Red Cross helps people prevent, prepare for, and respond to emergencies. Last year, nearly 300 residents of the Ulster County were provided free, emergency assistance by the Chapter after disasters such as fires, floods, and power outages. The Red Cross is not a government agency; it relies on donations of time, money and blood from the American people to do its work. An average of 90 cents of every dollar the Red Cross spends is invested in humanitarian services and programs.

The Red Cross urgently needs volunteers to assist with disaster relief efforts throughout the county. For more information on volunteering, contact or call (845) 338-7020.

1 comment:

Jeremiah said...

Typically the Red Cross will help until insurance kicks in. The above that you mention is the case when a home owner or renter does not have insurance.

It is very important to make insurance a priorty. Especially renters, as your landlord's insurance does not cover a renters belongings or expenses. And charity nor government assistance can never even begin to replace all of your belonings and losses.

After working for the Red Cross for 4 years that is one lesson that I came away with, and have always had insurance ever since no matter what sacrifices I had to make to pay for it.