New York’s Storm Impacted Immigrants and Low-Income Residents the Most

Documented: Most 311 flood-related calls the day of the storm were coming from areas with high populations of foreign-born residents

On Sept. 29, New York City was hit with a powerful storm that left many streets and homes flooded, the subway system paralyzed, and the city ground to a halt. Over 1,900 calls were made to the city’s non-emergency line, 311, to report flooding-related conditions, mostly from Brooklyn. An analysis of the calls shows the areas of the city hit hardest have above-average populations of foreign-born residents, according to 311 data cross-referenced with the U.S. Census.

While the city shares data of 311 requests related to street flooding, Documented scanned for all calls related to flooding and the ensuing damage. Documented’s data analysis, totaling 1,907 calls, looked for complaints related to street flooding, clogged catch basins, sewer-related complaints, as well as calls for damaged trees and cave-ins (potholes).

Mill Basin in Brooklyn, zip code 11234, had the most flood-related calls, according to the analysis. Park Slope had the second, followed by Kensington and Bensonhurst. Additionally, most of the top five neighborhoods contained high populations of immigrant residents. Bensonhurst, zip code 11214, had the highest population of immigrant residents at 54.8%, more than double the rate in New York of 22.5%. More than half of its immigrant population comes from Asia.

In April, Documented, in collaboration with Climate Central, published an analysis of over 11 years of 311 data that showed that many of the neighborhoods with the most flooding calls had high populations of immigrants, including Rosedale, Queens, which had 44 calls — the fifth most number of calls from the Sept. 29 storm. Read more>>>