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Rep. Julia Letlow stops by Alexandria Mega Shelter for second time to check on needs

Published: Sep. 3, 2021 at 5:03 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - Recovery efforts continue in Southeast Louisiana after Hurricane Ida’s destruction. But, for many who were evacuated out of the area, it’s still not safe to go back. They continue to be in places like the Alexandria Mega Shelter.

On Friday, September 3, Rep. Julia Letlow (R-LA, 5th District) stopped by the Alexandria Mega Shelter for the second time in a week to get an update on the shelter’s needs.

“Things are down,” said Shirlana Tralar of LaPlace, who is currently being housed in Alexandria. “There’s nothing to go home to.”

Tralar is still waiting to find out when she can finally leave the Alexandria Mega Shelter and return home to what’s left of LaPlace.

“Buildings. Businesses. All down,” said Tralar. “The only thing standing is Walmart and the liquor store.”

The Alexandria Mega Shelter, which took in evacuees from throughout Southeast Louisiana, is nearing capacity. And, as it does, those inside are pushing to get out and start the recovery process.

“When the second bus came or whatever, they had us believing we were going to be leaving the same day they came. We’re stuck here,” said Bryia Carlise, another resident from LaPlace.

The two women said communication has been limited, and what they’re seeing back home has them angry and worried.

“People are dying. They don’t have enough supplies,” said Tralar. “Where is our president? Where is our councilmen?

President Joe Biden made a stop in LaPlace on Friday, September 3. Meanwhile, Rep. Julia Letlow made her second stop in Alexandria this week at the Mega Shelter.

“It’s a completely different experience,” said Rep. Letlow. “Whereas, I was here before, there were about 60 or so occupants. Now, they’re almost to capacity. But, people are being well taken care of. I’m very happy with what I saw today.”

Rep. Letlow told KALB it was important for her to return.

“Anybody in the 5th District I call my own,” she said. “We’re fighting in Congress to make sure they receive those crucial funds, long term funds, because as you know this isn’t just a few days of recovery. This is going to be multiple months. They need that additional supplemental funding. That’s what Congress is doing, we’re fighting for those dollars.”

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