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Interviewee: Muoi Pham

Role: Tuna boat deckhand, New Orleans

Date of Interview: 4/12/11

Collection: Deepwater Horizon Oil Disaster Oral History Project

Click on the link below to play the audio clip from the interviewee.

Abstract: Muoi Pham, raised in a fishing family in Phan Thiet, Vietnam, survived Communist re-education camp after the fall of South Vietnam, then risked death escaping to Malaysia on a friend's boat in 1981. Muoi worked hard as a skilled deckhand until the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster stripped him of his livelihood in 2010. He expresses frustration over the oil disaster claims process and wonders how the industry will survive long-term.

Transcript:

The reason we can't work was because of BP, from the platform explosion, or whatever, but the compensation wasn't well proportioned because, you see, BP was pretty much in due fair, but only for a few months. Then they turned it over to GCCF. GCCF kept several billions dollars. Then they tightened on our fishermen and people in the fishing industry. And they compensated for people whose trades are on land and with low income. You've heard about all that. So how can the people in the fishing industry survive? This oil spill is long term. It doesn't go away in one, two years. It's been about four, five months now. GCCF did not send money. Nobody got any money. I've been in this industry since [19]85, '86. A long time. We depend on the sea. They gave us, they scammed us to take five thousand dollars. And then, they stopped paying us.

To listen to Muoi's interview, click here.