Hurricane Ian wreaked untold damage on millions of homeowners caught in its path.

It is the latest example of the perils of homeownership and the costly expense of rebuilding after a natural disaster. But as sociology professor Robin Bartram points out, this burden is especially hard on Black women who own homes that are in need of repairs even before disaster hits.

Leaky roofs, broken pipes and flooding basements frequently result in code violations and court cases, which may prompt liens, foreclosures and the possibility of homelessness.

Climate change means that these problems are getting worse.

Disrepair, Bartram adds, “also causes health and safety issues, as do other environmental injustices, such as the placement of highways and location of polluting factories.”

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Howard Manly

Race + Equity Editor

The removal of drywall during mold remediation is seen after a basement flood. Catherine McQueen/Getty Images

Black women endure legacy of racism in homeownership and making costly repairs

Robin Bartram, Tulane University

Routine maintenance is necessary for every homeowner. But for Black women, that burden is complicated by decades of redlining and the impacts of climate change.

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