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New York Tries Returning to Normal Life - 2001-09-17


Life slowly resumed some semblance of normality in New York Monday, but Mayor Rudolph Giuliani said it is time to face reality about the chances that any more survivors will be found in the wreckage.

Mayor Giuliani said about 70-80 percent of New York's workforce was back on the job. The New York Stock Exchange re-opened and, as expected, stock prices dropped sharply. However, Exchange Chairman Richard Grasso said normal stock trading was important in sending a message to the terrorists that they lost, and America is back to business.

At the site of the World Trade Center complex, or "ground zero" as it is now being described, more than 2,000 rescue workers continued to dig through the rubble. Mayor Giuliani says they are doing everything possible to find survivors but that hopes are fading.

"We want everyone to prepare themselves for the reality that we are not going to be able to recover significant numbers of people," he said. "We may have some success, any success would be a terrific success. But people should start absorbing that, and thinking about that, because the simple reality is that, when you look at the site, we are just not going to be able to recover significant numbers of people."

Since last Wednesday, no survivors have been found at the Trade Center complex. So far, more than 200 people are confirmed dead with about 5,500 officially listed as missing.

It has been widely noted that New Yorkers have pulled together to help each other during the crisis, abandoning the stereotypical aloofness that often characterizes local residents. The police department reports that overall crime in the city has dropped by almost 35 percent.

U.S. Education Secretary Rod Paige arrived in New York, bringing $4 million in federal aid for psychological counseling services. Children in the immediate area of the terrorist attack were safely evacuated, but children all over the city are suffering varying degrees of emotional trauma.