The effects of climate change are unfolding before our eyes as hurricanes, wildfires, floods, subzero temperatures, and tornadoes ravage the nation and the globe. Many communities who survive climate disasters do so with limited to no resources and are often struggling to recover before the next disaster hits.

Revisioning Recovery: Films Uncovering the Roots of Disaster is a new collection of short films that illuminate the current injustices, systems at play, and the solutions needed to prepare and respond to climate disasters. The series brings overlooked stories into the light and exposes the historical inequities that are exacerbated when disasters hit. 

Revisioning Recovery is designed to support Just Recovery organizing in critical locations led by those on the frontlines of the issues at hand. Events are being planned across the United States and Puerto Rico to offer models- catalyzing community conversations and action toward just, inclusive disaster preparedness and recovery. 

Featured Films:

Cooked: Survival by Zip Code (Directed/Produced by Judith Helfand) – Peabody Award-winning filmmaker Judith Helfand uses her signature serious-yet-quirky style to take audiences from the deadly 1995 Chicago heat wave to one of today’s biggest growth industries: disaster preparedness. The film forges inextricable links between extreme weather, extreme disparity, and extreme racism, daring to ask: what if a zip code was just a routing number and not a life-or-death sentence?

Razing Liberty Square (Work in Progress) (Directed by Katja Esson, Produced by Ann Bennett) – The battle for Liberty Square, the oldest segregated public housing project in the South has emerged as a prescient case of what’s to come. As Miami’s beachfront real-estate is threatened by sea-level rise, the high ground of Liberty Square, ten miles inland, has become the frontline for the newest manifestation of racial injustice: climate gentrification.

The Right to be Rescued (Directed/Produced by Rooted in Rights) – On the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina chances are good you won’t hear about the enormous impact this disaster had on people with disabilities. The Right to be Rescued film team went to New Orleans and asked people with disabilities what happened. The answer was simple and sad: There was no plan to rescue them. During Katrina, people with disabilities were denied the right to be rescued. It’s time for change.

The Sacrifice Zone (Directed/Produced by Julie Winokur) – The Ironbound district of Newark, New Jersey, is one of the most toxic neighborhoods in the country. Maria Lopez, a Honduran-American resident there, is waging a war for environmental justice. The Sacrific e Zone follows Maria as she leads a group of warriors who are fighting to break the cycle of poor communities of color serving as dumping grounds, so the rest of us can live in comfortable ignorance.

We Still Here (Directed by Eli Jacobs-Fantauzzi) – We Still Here introduces the incredible youth of Palomas navigating the aftermath of Hurricane Maria which brought an unprecedented level of devastation to Puerto Rico that has affected the present and future of an island already in crisis. In the lush mountains of Comerío, 24-year-old Mariangelie Ortiz leads a group of young residents who never thought they would become the leaders of their community, nonetheless find themselves traveling to Washington DC to protest in front of FEMA. Follow them in this coming of age story to find their power and begin creating a sustainable future for themselves and their community.

Screening events are available upon request. If you’re interested, please click here or below and a Working Films team member will be in contact!

The Revisioning Recovery Series was curated with our partners at California Rural Legal Assistance, the Houston Organizing Movement for Equity (HOME) Coalition, the North Carolina Environmental Justice Network, the North Carolina Justice Center, the National Low Income Housing Coalition, and the National Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies. Additional partners include Air Alliance Houston, Community Justice Project, Defend Puerto Rico, Greater New Orleans Housing Alliance, Greater New Orleans Foundation, Hip Hop Caucus, the Ironbound Community Corporation, Texas Organizing Project, and the World Institute on Disability.