How Does It Feel to Still Be Without a Home, Nearly 18 Months After Sandy?
Hundreds of New Jersey storm victims remain in temporary housing, but exact number is unclear
The Point Pleasant Beach motel destroyed in a tragic fire earlier this month had at least a few occupants who were superstorm Sandy refugees still living in temporary housing.
It's difficult to track the number of people who are still displaced due to Sandy, living in rentals or staying with family. FEMA is currently providing rental assistance to about 900 families. There are a few dozen more living in mobile homes and temporary housing at Fort Monmouth. And there's still a scattering of people staying in motels.
But New Jersey doesn't have current estimates for the number of people who have not been able to return home after the storm, including those who may be living in rentals or with family.
Tracey Samuelson of WHYY/NewsWorks, a partner of NJ Spotlight, delves into the statistics -- and talks to the people behind those statistics -- such as a South River woman whose flood-damaged home has not been repaired, forcing to live in a room rented from a friend and then in several area motels. She's now staying at one in East Brunswick, her $1,500-a-month motel tab paid through a temporary government program.