Caribbean consuls general from several nations got a tour of the storm ravaged area of Far Rockaway, Queens today, courtesy of Rev. Les Mullings of the Community Church of the Nazarene.
Consuls general Julian Dubois of St. Lucia, Charles Forbin, of Haiti, Omyma E. David of Antigua and Barbuda, Francis Ignatious of St Lucia, Herman LaMont of Jamaica, and Derrick James of Grenada have begun pitching in to help Caribbean nationals who are affected by the hurricane that ravaged many New York areas, leaving thousands without a home as well as without power, heat, water or food in some instances.
The consuls say they have been fielding frantic calls from Caribbean nationals in the region trying to locate relatives in the city, since many residents are still without power and reliable phone connections.
“It’s an ongoing process,” LaMont of Jamaica told the New York Daily News. “A lot of it is going to be human support, empathizing with people. We hope to establish those reconnections.”
“We tried to mobilize as best we can,” Julian Dubois, consul general of St. Lucia, was quoted as saying during his visit.
Some of the consuls have also been going door-to-door in the enclaves of Canarsie and Far Rockaway, looking for those in the Caribbean Diaspora in need of assistance.
Several also doled out hot meals at an evacuation shelter at Queens College last week.
“The U.S. government is always willing to give to Haiti. It was my duty to offer my help,” Forbin, consul general of Haiti, who was at the school serving meals told the paper. “This was something that I needed to do.”
More persons of West Indian ancestry live in New York City than any city outside of the West Indies. The ten nations constituting the largest sources of modern immigration to New York City include Caribbean nations of the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Guyana, Haiti and Trinidad and Tobago.