WASHINGTON, Sept. 9 (UPI) -- The federal government Friday was continuing to dole out funds to Hurricane Katrina victims to help with their immediate personal needs.
White House spokesman Scott McClellan said $460 million had already been disbursed to some 230,000 households through debit cards, electronic bank transfers and checks, and financial assistance efforts were continuing.
"This is an immediate cash assistance to some 230,000 households, so that people have the cash to be able to purchase food and pay for shelter and get other basic necessities, like medicine," McClellan said. "There continue to be more than 70,000 people working round-the-clock to bring critical aid and support to those in the Gulf Coast region.
"More than 248,000 evacuees have been safely housed in shelters in 22 states and the District of Columbia. More than 48,500 lives have been saved or rescued to date. And you have 87 national disaster medical teams engaged in the Gulf region."
McClellan said the Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, Treasury Secretary Snow, Commerce Secretary Gutierrez and Social Security Commissioner Barnhart were in Texas Friday assessing needs for distributing unemployment checks to those who have lost their jobs because of the disaster.