Shinnecock, Narragansett, Tribes Assess Needs in Wake of Hurricane Sandy
Power outages, downed trees and torn-up infrastructure had the Shinnecock Indian Nation and Narragansett Indian Tribe working closely with the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) for storm relief after Hurricane Sandy ripped through the tri-state area, decimating parts of New York City and the New Jersey coastline.
In a conference call with United South and Eastern Tribes (USET), the Narragansett Indian Tribe in Rhode Island reported trees down and power that would be out for an unspecified period of time.
“I’ve been told that it’s going to be weeks before we get power. So our greatest need is to get generators so we can continue our government functions,” said Narragansett Tribal Police Department Chief Jonathan Montey, according to a USET release. The Indian Health Service was scheduled to send generators.
The Shinnecock Indian Nation was entirely without power, Tribal Chairman Trustee Randy King told USET, and the tribal offices were coordinating emergency relief sans power, cell phones or Internet, and needed more generators.
“Our buffer areas are going to need some attention,” said King. “We have a tribal building that has a portion of its roof ripped back. We have residential homes with ripped-off roofs. We are still assessing the situation, but for the most part, power need is what we need. We are going to be placing orders with local food banks for food, if we need it, and water.”
The generators they’ve been working with are for residential use, King said, so they need stronger ones to keep the work flowing efficiently.
The bright spot, besides the unscathed experience of the Nanticoke-Lenape in Delaware and New Jersey, were the Connecticut tribes. The Mohegan Tribe and the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation registered minimal damage, USET said, with some trees down and roads blocked.
The Mohegan Sun casino was fully operational, with slight damage to its golf course. Foxwoods Resort Casino was closed for a few days because employees couldn’t get to work, USET said, though operations resumed on Wednesday October 31, the Pequot Tribe said.
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