Cambridge residents react to Biden’s visit – The Observer
LAPLACE – Some residents of the Cambridge Subdivision are saying they are optimistic that President Joe Biden will visit on Friday and his message to insurance companies “will make a difference” to recovery efforts.
Biden joined state and local officials at the Emergency Operations Center on Friday before visiting the aftermath of Hurricane Ida and speaking to the nation from the Cambridge neighborhood. He is committed to helping residents access the resources needed for recovery.
During his remarks, Biden lobbied insurance companies by threatening to deny living expenses coverage to residents of parishes where a mandatory evacuation has not been announced, including St. John the Baptist. Eligible post-hurricane assistance includes hotel stays, moving and transportation expenses, pet boarding, and certain cell phone services.
“We know that with the parishes that issued strong voluntary evacuation orders, many did not have enough time to make that order binding because the storm moved so quickly,” Biden said. “Even with voluntary evacuation orders, people felt safer leaving their homes in many cases. No one fled this deadly storm because they were looking for a vacation or a road trip. They left their home because they felt they had to flee the risk of death. There is nothing voluntary about it.
In a direct appeal to private insurance companies, he added, “Don’t hide behind the fine print and technicality. Pay what you owe your customers. Cover the cost of temporary housing in the event of a natural disaster. Help those in need.
Cambridge Drive resident Leroy Brown said he was happy to hear the president berating insurance companies. But Hattie Alexander, who lost her home on nearby Yorktowne Drive, remains skeptical due to her past experience and challenges with disaster relief.
Brown said Biden’s visit to LaPlace “will make a difference” and that Biden has done the right thing by demanding that insurance companies “pay their employees.”
Larry Snyder, 74, was among the residents who stayed behind and weathered the storm. The Cambridge Drive resident said he didn’t expect the storm to be as severe as it was. And because his house suffered only minor damage, he insisted on registering with FEMA for disaster assistance because he felt others needed it more. But when Biden and other officials stopped to speak to Snyder, he was told to apply anyway so they could provide him with supplies.
“From what I can see, he’s worried and he wants to get us help as soon as possible,” Snyder said. “It’s important for people like us. A lot of people have left. And many need help.
Residents who apply for assistance through FEMA are eligible to receive up to $ 500.
Snyder said the president, along with St. John the Baptist Ward president Jaclyn Hotard, was heartwarming and asked for what they needed. Snyder, who has now met two US presidents, was happy to hear Biden speak to his grandson, Legend Taylor. Snyder said Biden told Taylor, who was 13, that he was also from a small town and had become president. His message to Taylor was that he could grow up to do anything, including becoming President of the United States.
“I think it’s going to stay with him,” Snyder said.
Taylor said he wanted to be a scientist someday.
“It was pretty cool,” Taylor said. ” I was not excpecting that at all. He was very nice. He told me I could do anything.