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Play now 25 mins

15/06/2010

Duration:
25 minutes
First broadcast:
Tuesday 15 June 2010

In a special programme Matthew Bannister travels to the Mississippi Delta, to meet the people whose lives are directly affected by the oil spill

Shrimp dock silent
This area of the Mississippi Delta is home to both America's oil and fishing industries. A huge proportion of the country's seafood comes from Louisiana and Matthew meets Eric Hanson who runs the shrimp dock in Plaquemines Parish as well as fishermen from the large Vietnamese community who depend on shrimp fishing for their livelihoods. But at the moment their boats are lying empty, waiting for the spill to be cleaned up before they can go back to work.

"We will rebuild"
The local Catholic priest for the community, Father Joseph Tran tells Matthew that they are still physically and emotionally rebuilding after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina nearly five years ago. St Anne's Church is still in ruins and much of the congregation moved away after Katrina.

Oil Busters!
In Empire, Matthew meets local children who, have voiced their sadness and frustration at the spill at a specially organised rally. He hears their fears about their parents' lack of work and the possibility of losing their homes, maybe for the second time in five years.

"Hurt pride"
Monica Baltodano-Dubey, counsellor and Executive Director at Plaquemines Community C.A.R.E. Centers Foundation echoes those fears, telling Matthew that she worries about an increase in domestic abuse in the area as some men, losing their livelihoods resort to violence as an outlet for their frustration and loss of self esteem. The oil spill, she says is allowing the trauma of Hurricane Katrina finally to surface.

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