Disaster Recovery Center opens in New Orleans East for tornado victims

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Tornado damage on Schindler Street in New Orleans East.

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) —  Many still reeling following last week’s tornado, but FEMA and Governor John Bel Edwards are working together, creating this Disaster Recovery Center at the East New Orleans Public Library on Read Boulevard near Lake Forest Boulevard.

Volunteers are set up at the library, answering questions about disaster assistance and low-interest disaster loans for homeowners, renters and businesses. They can also help survivors apply for federal disaster assistance.

Low interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration are also available, for businesses of all sizes, including landlords, churches, and non profits. Also for homeowners and renters. These loans cover losses not fully covered by insurance or other recovery funds.

You do not have to visit a center to register for federal disaster assistance, in fact, they encourage survivors register with FEMA before coming out to the center.

For more information, applicants may contact the SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling 800-659-2955, emailing DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov or visiting the SBA’s website at sba.gov/disaster.

Disaster survivors who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability and use a TTY may call 800-462-7585 to register. Those who use 711 or Video Relay Service or require accommodations while visiting a center may call 800-621-3362. All disaster recovery centers are accessible and equipped with tools to accommodate disaster survivors who need disability-related communication aids. Each disaster recovery center has assistive technologies for people with disabilities. To arrange to have an ASL interpreter at the DRC when you visit, call 225-382-1739. Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call 800-877-8339.

For information call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362, download the FEMA mobile app, or go online to http://www.DisasterAssistance.gov or http://www.fema.gov/disaster/4300.