In New Orleans Dozens Of The City’s Homeless Remain Unsheltered Amid

In New Orleans Dozens Of The City’s Homeless Remain Unsheltered After Hurricane Ida

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Oakland News Now – In New Orleans Dozens Of The City’s Homeless Remain Unsheltered After Hurricane Ida – video made by the YouTube channel with the logo in the video’s upper left hand corner. OaklandNewsNow.com is the original blog post for this type of video-blog content.

NEW ORLEANS — As Hurricane Ida approached Sunday, dozens of this city’s homeless remained unsheltered, sleeping on sidewalks, in vehicles and in bus shelters. Over the weekend, Mayor LaToya Cantrell (D) repeatedly stressed that the city would not be opening emergency shelters, saying officials preferred that people just stayed home. But Cantrell said she still expected some shelters to be open for those on the streets or in encampments. However, several homeless people were spotted Sunday morning, including a man in a wheelchair asleep at a bus shelter. Others were seen crammed under building overhangs or wandering around streets near the French Quarter. Even at midday, as hurricane-strength winds began to batter the city, people could be seen wandering the streets with their belongings in tow. Many said they had no other option.“Where else am I going to go?” said one woman, who give only her first name, Lynn. “I am homeless. There was supposed to be one [shelter]. … I thought they were coming to pick us up, but they never came.”Jennifer Avegno, director of New Orleans Health Department, said the city has been working for days with its network of nonprofit health-care and homeless service providers to prepare for Ida. On Saturday night, when the shelter network reached capacity, the city opened an emergency shelter to house an additional 100 or so people. Avegno said police and health officers, as well as private outreach teams, had been trying to get as many as people as possible into those shelters. But she said some residents refused care, leaving the city no choice but to allow them to remain outside.“Certainly, all of us want to get people out of harm’s way,” Avegno said. “However, if someone is refusing to leave, just like if someone is refusing to leave a mandatory evacuation, we do not pluck them off their streets against their will.”“As concerning as it is, we pray that those folks can be as safe as they possibly can,” she said. “We will be there for them, when conditions are safe, to maybe go out and see how they are doing, but we never, never want to leave anyone on the streets.”WWL, the New Orleans CBS affiliate, reported that city officials had been working to clear out homeless encampments before Ida hit. But Brad James, a manager at a homeless shelter in downtown New Orleans, told WWL that some people who were dropped off at the shelter on Saturday night did not stay.“We’ve had some vans drop people off from underneath the bridge, but that’s home for them and people did not like to be pulled away from their homes,” James said. “As soon as they bring them into the yard, the vans pull away and the people would literally go back to their bicycles.”Avegno estimated that New Orleans has about 1,000 homeless people on any given day. During Hurricane Katrina 16 years ago, New Orleans faced nationwide criticism for not doing more to get low-income and vulnerable residents to safety.

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