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Neighbor to Neighbor -- The Downtown Solution: IPNTA's Guide to Community Healing


  • On 9/11/01 and the ten days following, IPN was faced with an enormous task. We are a large building complex. The Tenant Association command structure immediately went into action. Luckily our building manager was on site — helping us admirably to navigate the crisis.
  • The skeleton maintenance staff struggled to operate the building, signs with important announcements were printed in the management office. It was teamwork par excellence. Board members set up posts in the lobbies using the intercom system. Floor captains knew they were part of the team.
  • Countless others came to help. (It is important to note that people are going to volunteer, so be ready for them.) A dedicated tenant managed to get 90 meals twice a day for people who could not fend for themselves, and team members delivered the food. Even our youngest tenants helped out. We finally were able to obtain water, medicine, and trauma support for whoever needed it and to assist disabled tenants whose home care attendants were not allowed to enter the area.

"Since our building was evacuated, we didn't know where most people went. I was able to contact many Tenant Association floor captains by email. It was a way to spread news and let people know when they could return to their apartments."

  • Several tenants needed emergency hospital care and we were able to coordinate with Red Cross. 310 Greenwich lost all power and was evacuated. Many tenants took their neighbors (even those they didn't know) into their own apartments. Other tenants visited those who went to the shelters. Some tenants cooked for their entire floor, people knocked on doors asking elderly or disabled what they could do to help. Without tenant support it would have been impossible to meet so many challenges.
  • When the evacuated neighbors returned, they immediately joined the ranks. We were fortunate that with all of the struggles, not one tenant was lost. We credit our success to many things — but a key fact was that we were organized as a strong Tenant Association BEFORE the attack.

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