Comprehensive Study Finds Problems Mount For 'Indirect Victims' of WTC Attacks

New York City's Human Services Face Tough Times Ahead

Led by Employment, Housing and Mental Health Issues

Apr 23, 2002, 01:00 ET from United Way of New York City

    NEW YORK, April 23 /PRNewswire/ -- According to a report released today by
 United Way of New York City (UWNYC), in conjunction with local public
 officials, academics and agency leaders, problems continue to mount for
 "indirect victims" of the WTC attacks, resulting in added pressure on the
 City's human service agencies.
     "Beyond Ground Zero: Challenges and Implications for Human Services in New
 York City Post September 11," the most comprehensive study to date of the
 challenges faced by New Yorkers and the City's human service organizations
 that serve them, looks beyond the primary victims of the attacks to the
 countless indirect victims now struggling with employment, housing and mental
 health issues.
     The report, commissioned by the UWNYC's Environmental Scan Committee,
 states that the top three problems for New York City in 2002 are employment,
 affordable housing and mental health concerns.  For example:
      * Estimates on the number of jobs lost in New York as a result of the
        attack range from 90,000 to 150,000.
      * As of February 4, 2002, FEMA had provided a total of $5.9 million in
        mortgage and rental assistance to only an estimated 1,800 households
        who could demonstrate a loss of earnings due to the events of
        September 11.
      * According to a survey of adults living below 110th Street reported in
        The New England Journal of Medicine, an estimated 90,000 people
        reported symptoms consistent with a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress
        disorder or clinical depression five to eight weeks after the terrorist
        attacks. Another 34,000 people boroughwide met the criteria for both
     "This new study provides the broadest picture yet of the challenges New
 Yorkers and the City's human services organizations are now facing," said Jack
 Krauskopf, Chief Program Officer, 9/11 United Services Group and chairman of
 the UWNYC's Environmental Scan Committee. "Community leaders and agencies came
 together to oversee this study, which identifies and prioritizes the
 challenges ahead. The pressures placed on nonprofit agencies may require a
 change in the way they operate," added Krauskopf.
     The report also includes proposed solutions to the new challenges facing
 nonprofits, such as improving coordination and avoiding duplication in the
 delivery of service; improving the basic business skills of agency managers;
 and, exploring opportunities to reduce costs and enhance effectiveness through
 mergers of organizations with similar or complementary missions.
     Ripple Effects
     While the physical damage caused by the terrorist attack was concentrated
 in a relatively small area, the economic and social effects pervade citywide.
 While many September 11th-related charities ? including The September 11th
 Fund, which UWNYC founded with The New York Community Trust ? have provided
 substantial assistance to tens of thousands of New York City workers and their
 families, the criteria used to define eligibility for assistance left out many
 people who lost their jobs as a result of the attack. For example:
     -- The loss of 9,000 jobs in the City's aviation industry during the fall
        of 2001 is for the most part a direct result of the events of
        September 11. But because airline and other airport employees worked in
        Queens rather than Lower Manhattan, they were not eligible for
     -- Workers laid off from hotels below Canal Street are considered victims
        of September 11; but workers laid off by Midtown hotels due to the
        sharp drop in visitor traffic after September 11 are not.
     -- People who had worked in the informal economy -- restaurant workers,
        deli delivery men, street vendors, housekeepers or informal child care
        workers and other who were paid "off the books" were in some cases
        unable to provide the documentation required to prove that they had in
        fact been working in the area below Canal Street.
     "We estimate that there are nearly 50,000 workers who lost their jobs but
 do not meet the eligibility requirements for other sources of
 September 11th-related relief," said Joe McDermott, executive director of the
 Consortium for Worker Education, which has helped displaced workers with job
 training and placement. "Relatively few industries have been left unscathed."
     United Way Works to Prioritize Areas of Need
     "The findings of the report will be instrumental in helping United Way
 define its post-September 11th funding priorities. We are working with city
 officials and businesses to find ways to address those problems that have been
 exacerbated since September 11 but are not being addressed by September 11th
 charities," said Ralph Dickerson, Jr., President of UWNYC. "It is our
 responsibility to alert human service organizations and local officials about
 these findings and to work with all community groups to offer solutions and
 assistance as our City undergoes the rebuilding process."
     Since the attacks and the economic downturn in New York, the cost to the
 City's economy has been variously estimated at anywhere between $63 billion
 and $125 billion over the next three years. The report indicates that private
 philanthropy will become more important to sustaining the overall health of
 the City as State and City dollars are reduced.
     In response, United Way of New York City created a new initiative called
 "Support New York" and is working with interested donors to apply
 contributions where they are needed most.  Verizon, for example, has donated
 $4.3 million to United Way's Support New York Initiative.
     The "Beyond Ground Zero" Report, conducted by Appleseed Inc., was
 commissioned by United Way of New York City's Environmental Scan Committee,
 comprised of 33 community leaders and UWNYC staff members (see list below).
 For a copy of the complete report, please contact Jeanette Brown of United Way
 of New York City at 212-251-2473 or visit the UWNYC web site (
     About United Way of New York City
     United Way of New York City (UWNYC) is a volunteer-led organization
 dedicated to helping New York City's most vulnerable citizens become and
 remain self-sufficient.  UWNYC funds a network of the most effective health
 and human services nonprofits in the five boroughs; unites voluntary
 organizations, businesses and government to address our community's most
 pressing needs; and provides management assistance, technology training,
 donated computers and more to help nonprofits achieve maximum impact.  UWNYC's
 Web site address is
                          United Way of New York City
                              "Beyond Ground Zero:
        Challenges and Implications for Human Services in New York City
                               Post-September 11"
                          Environmental Scan Committee
                                 Jack Krauskopf
      Chief Program Officer, 9/11 United Services Group
      (Senior Fellow of the Aspen Institute when the report was initiated)
                               Steering Committee
      Barbara Blum                       James R. Dumpson
      Director, Research Forum           Senior Consultant, Office of the
      National Center for Children       President
      in Poverty                         The New York Community Trust
      Edward J. Mullen                   Setsuko Matsunaga Nishi
      Willma & Albert Musher Professor,  Professor Emerita of Sociology
      Columbia University School of      and Principal Investigator,
      Social Work; Director, Center      Japanese American Life Course Project,
      for the Study of Social Work       The Graduate School and Brooklyn
      Practice                           College, The City University of
                                         New York
      Mary Ann Quaranta                  Alan B. Siskind
      Provost, Marymount College and     Executive Vice President and Chief
      Dean Emerita,                      Executive Officer, Jewish Board of
      Fordham University Graduate        Family & Children's Services, Inc.
      School of Social Work
      Eric Brettschneider                Barbara Bryan
      Executive Director                 President
      Agenda for Children Tomorrow (ACT) New York Regional Association of
                                         Grantmakers (NYRAG)
      Lorraine Cortes-Vazquez            Thomas DeStefano
      President, Hispanic                Chief Executive Director
      Federation, Inc.                   Catholic Charities Diocese of Brooklyn
      Rose Dobrof                        Michael Feller
      Professor of Gerontology           President
      Brookdale Center for Aging,        Chase Manhattan Foundation
      Hunter College
      Rosa Maria Gil                     Mark Hoover
      University Dean for Health         Former First Deputy Commissioner
      Sciences                           NYC Human Resources Administration
      The City University of New York
      Emily Menlo Marks                  Megan McLaughlin
      Executive Director                 Executive Director & CEO
      United Neighborhood Houses         Federation of Protestant Welfare
      of New York                        Agencies, Inc.
      Gail Nayowith                      Cao O
      Executive Director                 Executive Director
      Citizens' Committee for Children   Asian American Federation of
                                         New York, Inc.
      Moises Perez                       Andrew Rein
      Executive Director                 Senior Policy Advisor, Office of the
      Alianza Dominicana, Inc.           Chancellor
                                         New York City Board of Education
      Aida Rodriguez                     Joseph Rose
      Chair, Non-Profit Management       Former Director
      Program                            NYC Department of City Planning
      New School University Milano
      Graduate School
      John Ruskay                        Stuart Saft
      Executive Vice President & CEO     Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman &
      United Jewish Appeal-Federation    Herz LLP; Chair, New York City
      of Jewish Philanthropies of        Workforce Investment Board
      New York
      Nicholas Scoppetta                 Rev. Msgr. Kevin Sullivan
      Commissioner, NYC Fire Department  Acting Executive Director, Catholic
      and Former Commissioner, NYC       Charities of the Archdiocese of
      Administration for Children's      New York
      James Tallon                       Dennis Walcott
      President                          Deputy Mayor of Policy, City of New
      United Hospital Fund of New York   York
                                         Former President & CEO, New York
                                         Urban League
                       United Way of New York City Staff
      Larry Mandell                      Lilliam Barrios-Paoli
      Executive Vice President and       Senior Vice President, Agency Services
      Chief Operating Officer
      Linda Forbes
      Vice President, Policy and Planning
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SOURCE United Way of New York City