FEMA No Show at Katrina Information Fair

By: Deborah Tuff
By: Deborah Tuff

Since the aftermath of Katrina, many evacuees are calling the Wiregrass home.

Several said the Katrina Information Fair that answered questions on topics like employment opportunities and financial assistance was very helpful.

But, what they say wasn't helpful was FEMA not showing up.

The Katrina Information Fair began with a bang Tuesday morning with more than 100 Katrina evacuees showing up.

Wednesday afternoon, the second day of the event, the crowd wasn't as large...but many victims were here, from the day before

Kevin Douchette, evacuee from Slideoon, LA said “we came back today hoping that
FEMA would show up because we were told they'd be here yesterday and we came in and they weren't here. We came back today hoping they'd be here and they were not here.”

So, the question is “why was FEMA a no show two days in a row?”

Houston County EMA Director Shelby Womack explains “I would think that they are in a situation where people needs are more than the needs here, but I really can't answer why they didn't show up.”

Now some might have to head home just to fill out paperwork

David Donovan from Chalmette, LA says “no one seems to know when FEMA will or may show up, so I may need to return to Baton Rouge, Louisiana and fill out forms there.”

Doucette says they’ll “sit and wait and hope that maybe we can have a breakthrough and get some body to call us back.”

Evacuees still had positive things to say about the event, just not about FEMA.

Victims were promised by FEMA officials they'd be at the fair.

Also, the Wiregrass Christian Relief Effort is opening its doors for evacuees.

The organization is providing a central clearing house for information on housing, appliances and Wiregrass area churches available to sponsor families who are in need of temporary or permanent relocation to our area.

The office is located at the Westgate Church of Christ on 617 Westgate Parkway in Dothan.


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