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A Portrait of Louisiana

Louisiana Human Development Report 2009

Louisiana has great success stories to tell—from its maturing status as the most prepared region in the country, to the burgeoning class of solution-minded innovators and social entrepreneurs, to the renaissance of civic participation that promises to stoke long-term improvements. The state has below-average unemployment rates, in part due to significant stimulus and recovery dollars winding their way through the state, and has been recognized as Co-State of the Year by a business development group for its "vibrant economy." We must build on these successes.

However, we must also soberly assess the challenges yet before Louisiana. This report paints an often troubling picture of long-standing human disparities, some of which have been exacerbated by natural/man-allowed disaster and the global economic crisis. The report's Human Development (HD) Index is a user-friendly method of comparing the condition of communities. This analysis has great potential to guide policy-making processes and to support data-driven thinking that moves beyond the assumptions of historical parochialism.

This report was developed by the Louisiana Disaster Recovery Foundation (LDRF) in partnership with Oxfam America and other organizations committed to fully recovering the lives of Gulf Coast citizens.

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