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Recovery Assistance Very Slow in Oaxaca Community Affected by Sept. 7 Earthquake

ISSN:1054-8890
LADB Article ID: 80453
Category/Department: Mexico
Date: 2017-11-01
By: Carlos Navarro

Mexico suffered two devastating earthquakes in September, but most of the attention—and recovery assistance—has centered around Mexico City and nearby communities in Puebla and other central states, the areas hit hardest by the second seismic disaster, which measured 7.1 on the Richter scale.An earthquake two weeks earlier in southern Mexico measured 8.2 on the Richter scale, causing its greatest damage in Oaxaca and Chiapas. By some estimates, the Sept. 7 earthquake damaged 126,000 homes and other structures in more than 1,000 communities in the two states. The greatest problems occurred in Juchitán in Oaxaca, a community of 74,000, where 700 commercial establishments sustained some sort of damage, according to the local branch of the national chamber of commerce (Cámara Nacional de Comercio, CANACO). CANACO said some of the businesses in Juchitán were forced to close because their premises collapsed completely, while others shut because of the downturn in trade. Thousands of employees have lost their jobs, most without receiving any severance pay. Even some businesses that escaped serious damage remained closed in the weeks that followed the earthquake because of aftershocks and concerns about safety. Preliminary estimates from CANACO indicate that only 10% of the city’s businesses had reopened as of late October.

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