Thursday, September 08, 2005

Red Cross answers the question themselves

As I mentioned in a previous post, the American Red Cross had and continues to have a significant amount of relief supplies available to assist people still doing without clean water and food in New Orleans. The reason they aren't in there handing them out is because the state authorities are denying them permission to do so. From the Red Cross' site:

::::::::Hurricane Katrina: Why is the Red Cross not in New Orleans?

* Acess [sic] to New Orleans is controlled by the National Guard and local authorities and while we are in constant contact with them, we simply cannot enter New Orleans against their orders.

* The state Homeland Security Department had requested--and continues to request--that the American Red Cross not come back into New Orleans following the hurricane. Our presence would keep people from evacuating and encourage others to come into the city.
::::::::

Emphasis mine. Bear in mind that's the Louisianna State Dept of Homeland Security, not the federal DHS.