Kelsey Holdway, Research Project #2, Section 1

Power of the Fredericksburg Regional Food Bank!

I decided for my community engagement to volunteer with Kam at the Fredericksburg Regional Food Bank! We weighed items, stocked shelves, and talked to many kind people. We learned a lot about where the Regional Food Bank is on the level of power; we also saw how vital this food bank is for the surrounding areas due to these food insecure regions. If you want to read more about what the Regional Food Bank does and the levels of power, check below!

Research Paper #2

Reaction Paper 3 (Case Study) Kelsey Holdway: Section 1

“Police Force in Sports Riots vs Ferguson and Baltimore Protests”

In class we discussed the protests in Baltimore and Ferguson and how the police dealt with the protests as a whole. This case study looks at how sports riot police ideas can be used in dealing with normal riots and protests. In my paper  the term “soccer hooliganism” is used to explain these sports riots. This leads to the explanation of how a certain sports riot came about, and how it led to better police training that has been used around the world, except in Ferguson and Baltimore.

Kelsey Holdway- Reaction Paper 3

Interesting Article about the Clean Power Plan

Link Here

So I do not know how I stumbled upon this article but I found it very interesting in relation to community power. It talks about the Environmental Protection Agency’s, Clean Power Plan. It stated that, “Emerald Cities Collaborative (ECC) called for equity and inclusion for low-income communities of color as states develop and implement CPP-mandate carbon reduction plans”. They want to ensure that every community is apart of this plan and benefits from it. We can tell that most of the time, low income communities have less power and are not able to fight back to have a say in what goes on in their neighborhoods. The EPA stated that it requires states to say how they engaged in the low income communities of color while developing CPP’s in order for states to receive early investment rewards. In the middle of the article is says that communities near power plants, which are usually low income communities like we learned in class, are subject to higher rates of pollution. One main point in the article stated that, ” high rates of pollution-related illness such as cancer, asthma and other respiratory diseases in communities of color to the reality that 68 percent of African-Americans and 40 percent of Latinos live within 30 miles of a coal-fired power plant and more than half of Asian Pacific Islanders in the United States live in counties with unhealthy air quality”. I think that just shows how bad this problem really is! However, the ending was very positive saying that, “CEIP (Clean Energy Incentive Program) gives vulnerable communities the opportunity to generate wealth by turning property owners and communities into energy producers through community ownership of energy resources, as well as to create clean-energy jobs for local residents”. Hopefully this will actually happen and these communities will get cleaner and better. Not only would it help the environment in which they live in, but it will also help their economy. I do not know a lot of details on any of this but I am going to look into this more! Hope everyone like this, sorry it was so long!


Kelsey Holdway, Section 1, Reaction 2, Super-storm Sandy and Hurricane Katrina

Kelsey Holdway- Case Study, Submitted 10/21/15

Comparing Hurricane Katrina and Super-storm Sandy  


When Super-storm Sandy hit the Northeast United States the effects could be related to what happened in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. Many parallels can be noticed when looking at the effects of these two storms on low income residents. In both storms, public housing residents could not leave their apartments because they had nowhere to go or lacked the accessibility to get out. After the storm people had nowhere to go and had no job because businesses had been shut down or destroyed. This caused low income residents to suffer the most because they have no income that can temporarily assist them in getting back on track. They look to federal programs to assist them. The programs do help many low income residents, however, the amount is not enough for them to be able to reclaim their normal lives.

As noticed in Hurricane Katrina, public housing residents were trapped in the apartments because they had nowhere else to go. Many low income residents did not have cars to leave New Orleans or had nowhere to go, the city did little on their end to evacuate everyone and give them assistance (Arena, 2012). During Super-storm Sandy some public housing residents were trapped in apartments; elevators in some public housing apartments did not work so many elderly and disabled residents were confined to the small apartment. The article also states that many other low income residents stayed in their high rises simply because they had nowhere else to go. “In other parts of the region, low-income people were unable to make it to food stamp centers for assistance. The estimated cost of the destruction wrought by Sandy was $65 billion, with low-income households greatly impacted” (Ross, 2013, p.1).

The inequality of low income residents can be examined through the unemployment assistance; after a disaster many places of business are destroyed or closed for repair, therefore people do not have any place to work. The Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) gave assistance to residents who would not quality for normal unemployment benefits, however, the actual benefits they received were still too low. This could be shown as the only reasonable option for someone in public housing, especially in New Orleans. Many of the states surrounding the victims had a higher cost of living, therefore, it was likely that many people were not able to just leave and find a job and housing. This could be paralleled to New York and New Jersey after Super-storm Sandy. New York lost 29,100 private jobs while New Jersey also lost 8,100 jobs (Ross, 2013, p.15). The DUA also does not help as much here because often time’s salary workers are not helped. The business could be open, but as the article stated, it is on the worker if they cannot make it to work after the storm (Ross, 2013). Overall, unemployment assistance after disasters do not fully aid low income residents. It may look as if there are great programs set in place to assist, however, often times the assistance is less than what they had before.

After Super-storm Sandy hit in New York, the city relied on volunteers and other community based organizations to assist low income housing residents. It had been stated that it was the responsibility of The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to provide assistance and help to public housing authorities and other organizations to make sure the public housing residents are safe during disasters. There was poor quality in the housing that low income residents were living in which argues that the HUD and other organizations did not actually fully prepare public housing and the residents (Ross,2013). This can also be shown in Hurricane Katrina, after the storm the public housing authorities did not help the low income residents. The city had their own agenda to destroy public housing and get the people out of that part of town. The city left it up to community based organizations and members of the community to rebuild their lives; displaying that the public housing authorities and other parties associated with public housing did not put much effort into helping low income residents.

Overall, both Hurricane Katrina and Super-storm Sandy had similar complications occur in public housing and with low income residents; it can be shown that low income residents are at a higher percent of inequality when it comes to aid after disasters. States and local governments seem to focus on the community while looking past public housing areas when it comes to rebuilding and fixing the city; they leave it up to community based organizations and nonprofits to serve as a temporary assistance for low income residents of the areas. Both address the vulnerability of low income communities during and after disasters and how they are often overlooked by the state when it is time to rebuild the community.

Arena, J. (2012). Driven from New Orleans. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Ross, T. (2013). A Disaster in the Making (1st ed.). Center for American Progress. Retrieved from


Kelsey Holdway SOC 371 Section 1, Human Trafficking in Northern Virginia

Human Trafficking in Northern Virginia-

Human trafficking in Northern Virginia is a constant concern for the community. Two community powers, law enforcement and faith-based organizations, use their power help reach out to everyone in the community regarding human trafficking. Due to the lack of training law enforcement arrests the teens being trafficked rather than the pimps; creating a vicious cycle that the teens being trafficked suffer in. Faith-based organizations focus on using their power to help victims and offer any type of service to them. While both law enforcement and faith-based organizations contrast in many way, they do come together to help educate the community on human trafficking. This gives the community the power to put their voices together and put a stop to human trafficking.


Human Trafficking Sociology

Brooklyn Matters & Utah’s Ten Year Plan, Case Study

Kelsey Holdway

Professor Martin

Reaction Paper #1


Brooklyn Matters & Utah’s Ten Year Plan

“Brooklyn Matters” was an important documentary showing how people with more money can have more power than those with less money. They are able to have more say in governmental decisions, while community members struggle to get a voice in an argument. This documentary gives a visual comparison for the case study about Utah’s homeless population and how community members and Utah are helping get homeless into permanent housing. With two different motives it is key to compare and contrast them and also look at both of them from a pluralist view.

The homeless population since 2004 has been on a decline due to a program called “Housing First”. This program was put in place by Lt. Governor Olene Walker, with the help of many other organizations. There are four main strategies to the Housing First Program rather than just putting the chronically homeless into houses. The first objective set in place by Utah’s Homeless Coordinating Committee is Affordable Housing, this goal helps “create additional low income permanent “Housing First” units for chronically homeless and affordable housing units for all homeless persons and families” (Utah’s Plan To End Chronic Homelessness And Reduce Overall Homelessness By 2014, 2008). Prevention and Discharge Planning helps plan for those who are about to become homeless whether it be from jail, shelters, or hospitals. Supportive Services are set into place to help get the homeless that have been placed in affordable housing a chance to start again through case managers and different types of therapy programs. The last objective is, Homeless Management Information, which enters all of the homeless placed into housing units and keeps track of them and their outcomes/success rates.

The documentary, “Brooklyn Matters”, highlighted a neighborhood (Atlantic Yards) that was being redeveloped through a Community Based Agreement (CBA). Ratner wanted to go into Brooklyn and build a nicer community filled with luxury homes and even a basketball arena. His plans were going to put many residents out because of the cost of housing. The lower income community was going to be run out because of the project so they started to fight back. Ratner came up with an affordable housing agreement stating that they would build “affordable housing” for persons displaced from the new project.

Looking at both resources there are similarities and differences. Utah’s and Ratner’s plan both put money into the state. Ratner’s project to build this new community and arena would bring in more revenue to the state through luxury housing and entertainment. Utah’s plan would save the state money by cutting the amount of ER/hospital visits and incarceration days/costs. Many cities have started the same program, such as Denver, which net cost saving equal to about $4,745 which could be used in other financial opportunities. Both projects want to help people and give growth to a city. However, Ratner is more commercialized and looking at it largely from a money point of view; Utah is trying to combat a larger problem of homelessness which actually saves the state money. Certain people in both Brooklyn and Utah wield influence, the community members who agree with the project will support it and not speak out. The members who do not support the project will speak out and demand a change. The differences include who the decision making power is. In Brooklyn, Ratner and corporate have most of the power, however, in Utah much of the power is in the hands of the state and community organizations willing to help.

A large difference in Utah vs Rater is that, in Utah the funding is from the state and local government, while in Brooklyn the funding was private. Making the funding private gives power to the people/corporation and lowers the amount of voice the community has. In Utah, since the funding is from the state there is more accountability. Community members would probably have a greater chance of getting their voices heard if state and local officials were involved rather than private individuals, because there is a higher power above them that can change the way the program works if need be. The largest difference that outlines the both projects is that Rater had selected officials while the program and Utah elects officials (State’s Homeless Coordinating Committee). Giving more power to the people provides better opportunity for success. The members of the community live there and know what some challenges are rather than an official being selected that has never lived in the neighborhoods. For example, one major problem with homelessness in Utah is the addiction to drugs and alcohol. One idea the organization came up with was to give the chronically homeless supportive services that gives the person the option of getting treatment for his/her addiction. Selected official might ignore the underlying problems of the homeless and just provide them with shelter as long as they pay the low rent.

Both Ratner and the State’s Homeless Coordinating Committee have the same goal; provide the community with a chance of improvement while growing the city. However, Ratner designed a plan that would hurt one area of the community that did not have the money to live anywhere else. Utah saw a growing problem and decided to combat it with a program that would not do harm to any member in the community living around the project. Looking from a pluralist view it could be decided that a pluralist would agree Utah’s Plan to End Chronic Homelessness, because the decisions in the organization are being made by engaged community members and elected officials. The people who want to be involved are working to help make a change. There is a great deal of potential power in the communities in Utah, people know about the high homeless population and might be able to give insight to the elected officials on how to approach the project. A pluralist would not agree with Ratner because the decisions are made by him and a group of wealthy individuals. The community had little to no power in the decisions when they wanted to make a change. In Brooklyn there seemed to be an equal amount of actual power and potential power, however, it was only in the hand of the selected committee.

Work Cited

Brooklyn Matters Video watched in class

Comprehensive Report On Homelessness. 1st ed. Salt Lake City: Utah Housing and Community Development Division State Community Services Office, 2014. Web. 29 Sept. 2015.

Utah’s Plan To End Chronic Homelessness And Reduce Overall Homelessness By 2014. 1st ed. Utah’s Homeless Coordinating Committee, 2008. Web. 29 Sept. 2015. (I’m having trouble getting the cited work to show up when you search it so I just added the link below.)