Image - people with disaster wreckage
Past Event

Saket Soni on the People Who Make Disaster Recovery Possible

Who cleans up and rebuilds our communities after floods, fires and hurricanes? COVID redefined America's definition of “essential workers,” but many who help communities recover from climate disasters remain underpaid and overlooked. 

In 2006, Saket Soni got an anonymous call from an Indian migrant worker in Mississippi who had scraped together $20,000 to apply for the “opportunity” to rebuild oil rigs after Hurricane Katrina. The caller was only one of hundreds lured into Gulf Coast labor camps, surrounded by barbed wire, and watched by armed guards. In Soni’s new book The Great Escape, he chronicles one of the largest human trafficking cases in modern American history—and the workers’ heroic journey for justice. 

Today, Soni is the founder and director of Resilience Force, a national nonprofit that advocates for the rising workforce that rebuilds after climate disasters. Join Climate One host Greg Dalton in conversation with Saket Soni as we explore the surprising connections between climate disasters, migrant labor and resilience.


Soni photo by and copyright Bill Wadman.

January 19, 2023

The Commonwealth Club of California
United States

Image - Saket Soni

Saket Soni

Founder and Director, Resilience Force

Image - Greg Dalton

Greg Dalton

Founder and Host, Climate One