Red Cross to shut down River Center shelter by Sept. 15

Red Cross shelter at Baton Rouge River Center to close on Sept. 15

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Red Cross officials announced that the Baton Rouge River Center shelter will be closed by Thursday, September 15.

The Red Cross is working with evacuees in the shelters to help them with housing arrangements. Officials said people from the shelters are leaving as they find a new place to stay.

According to the Red Cross, shelters are opened during an emergency to help people in need of a safe place to stay. Officials stated emergency shelters generally are not meant to stay open for long periods of time as many shelters in the area have been open for almost a month. They added that owners of the facilities being used as shelter are ready to return to business.

"We understand that there will likely be some residents that will not have been able to finalize new situations by September 15," said a Red Cross spokesperson about the closing of the River Center shelter. "For those individuals, the Red Cross will provide alternate temporary shelter until more appropriate and longer-term accommodations can be found. This will be different for many individuals and we do not have a single location for a large congregate shelter like the River Center."

The organization will help transport those staying in the alternate temporary shelter.

According to Ascension Parish officials, the shelter at Lamar Dixon in Gonzales will remain open through at least Saturday, September 17. The parish took over control of the shelter and will continue to help the approximately 50 residents remaining at the shelter find more permanent housing.

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