“My Name is 6508799”: An NAACP Special Investigation

Last May, NAACP leaders in Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, and Mississippi began an investigation into the impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and the needs of Gulf communities arising from the disaster.

Over the last year, the NAACP has engaged BP in seeking to secure remedies for those persons and communities detrimentally affected by the oil spill. We have brokered meetings to advocate for minority contractor inclusion in the remediation efforts, worker safety and protection, a more effective claims process, a resolution to the disproportionate placement of oil disaster waste in African American communities, and financial support for community based organizations that are serving the needs of Gulf communities.

Now, one year after the disaster, we have completed a follow up investigation, in partnership with the Gulf Coast Fund for Community Renewal and Ecological Health, through interviews with dozens of affected community members and a literature review of area statistics on employment, business profit-loss, mental and physical health issues, etc., to assess the extent to which reforms have been made in response/recovery efforts.