Evacuees want FEMA to defer changes in housing assistance - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Evacuees want FEMA to defer changes in housing assistance

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - Some Hurricane Katrina evacuees in Memphis want the federal government to continue its housing assistance program.

The group known as Displaced Citizens of the Gulf Coast also hopes to persuade local community agencies to open satellite offices to make it easier for evacuees to receive services.

The group of a few hundred evacuees met yesterday afternoon to express frustrations over the Federal Emergency Management Agency's change in housing payment policies.

FEMA has said that as of February 28th it will begin paying housing money directly to evacuees, as opposed to the current policy of paying through state agencies.

Evacuees will need to register with FEMA before receiving the money. But the evacuees said yesterday that process will lead to more hassles and red tape.

FEMA spokesman Michael Widomski said the change will not prevent anyone from receiving help.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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