FEMA Arrives

by Jessica Cervantez

FEMA representatives are meeting with evacuees at the Lufkin shelter. They are here to help them recover from the storm. That is a big job for the FEMA workers is answering questions from storm evacuees.

They came with a lot of information to answer questions from storm evacuees about FEMA applications and housing.

Doug Holland, a Red Cross volunteer, said, "We talked to housing authorities around here and we're trying to get the housing started, and trying to get the evacuees that are in temporary housing in some type of housing."

FEMA representatives know a lot of evacuees are waiting for government money to help them recover. But, distribution of FEMA assistance is taking a while. One reason for the delay, is people trying to scam the system.

Holland said, "If you come from another shelter or you have already filled an application double with Red Cross for assistance, once you do that, it's going to slow that system down. It will stop the process, and they will have to re-track all this and make sure there is no duplication."

Many evacuees have set up general delivery with the post office. But Red Cross volunteers now say they need to fill out different forms to make sure they receive their money.

Holland said, "If you set up for general delivery, then you need to go back to the postal service so that they can set you up with an address."

The shelter has seen hundreds more evacuees coming from the Houston and Beaumont area. They are thinking that they will be able to get their money sooner in a shelter that is less packed.

Already, the Lufkin shelter has seen 300 new evacuees.