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December 1, 2014


He taught at Jamaica High School for 28 years. But after the school closed in June, Social Studies teacher James Eterno had to start from the very beginning. Eterno sent resumes, cover letters and substituted as a teacher and college advisor at two high schools in an attempt to find a stable position. Five months later, the principal’s answer is the same: “There is no money.”...

In the corner between 29th Street and 30th Avenue in Astoria, New York, stands a café called Plaza Lounge, where Helaina Hovitz, 25, sat in a four-seat wooden table, eating humus dip and pita bread, while listening to honks and rap songs of cars driving by. The sound of a plane engine became louder as it flew above the town. Hovitz stopped chewing, pressed her lips tight and started to fidget nervously...

Almost two years after Hurricane Sandy struck New York, Julie Blake and her husband are in debt and still waiting for government assistance to finish recover a house in Broad Channel, Queens, that their two children call home.

“It’s the only home they know,” Blake said referring to her 7 and 11-year-old children and the two-story house she owned for 13 years.

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