DHR taking steps to provide relief for hurricane victims

August 31, 2005

ATLANTA (GA) – The Department of Human Resources (DHR) is mobilizing to provide assistance for those who have been affected by Hurricane Katrina. DHR’s Division of Family and Children Services (DFCS) has responsibility, under Governor Perdue’s Emergency Support Function 6 Mass Care (ESF 6) Initiative, to work with the American Red Cross when their resources are limited. Mass care includes sheltering, feeding and disaster welfare inquiry. While the Red Cross has the primary responsibility for establishing and operating shelters in the affected areas, DFCS stands ready to provide assistance to the Red Cross in fulfilling that duty.

DFCS opened a shelter in Carroll County for families needing refuge from tornado activity in that county. This shelter will remain open until it is no longer needed. DFCS is also working with the Red Cross to open a shelter in Peach County, site of another apparent tornado. Additional shelters have been opened in Fulton, Muscogee and Lowndes to handle the large number of out of state refugees expected from the Gulf Coast States. The Department of Human Resources will also make resources available to authorities in Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana, if assistance is requested in providing emergency help with Food Stamp or TANF issuance.

DHR’s Division of Public Health, under the National Disaster Medical System (NDMS) is making preparations to receive an as yet undetermined number of patients being evacuated from hospitals in the affected areas along the Gulf Coast. These patients will be housed at approximately 40 different hospitals across the state. The Department of Human Resources will make further resources available, as needed.

For information, contact:
Ari Young, Division of Family and Children Services
404-657-1387, acyoung@dhr.state.ga.us
Tod Rose, Division of Public Health
404-463-2299, tsrose@dhr.state.ga.us