East Texas shelter feels shutdown effects - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

East Texas shelter feels shutdown effects


An East Texas women's shelter is feeling the effects of the government shutdown.  Every bunk is taken, and cots and air mattresses are used every night at the House of Hope women's shelter in Longview.

"I'm turning away four to five women a day because we are trying to save one to two cots. We're out of beds," says shelter director Helen Johnson.  

The problem is more women in need.

"We're trying to save a cot or a bed for someone who's absolutely in an emergency situation," Johnson says.   

Ordinarily, the shelter sleeps fifty to fifty-five women a night.

"Since September 1st we've had a scare from the government. We have a lot of girls who are on disability. They're just in a situation where they're not really sure that those checks are going to come in," says Johnson.  

Kenda Stallings suffers from lupus and needs government assistance.

"We're not able to look for work because we're not able to work due to our disabilities and now they're telling us we may not even get a check or a court date on appeal. A lot of us are waiting on our disability , that's what we're lacking," she says. 

The increase has drained the shelter's resources.

"We used up all of our food supply in the month of September. And my air conditioning went out," Johnson says.  

But they have nowhere else to turn.

"I am left just hanging, just hanging," Stalling's says.

The House of Hope is asking for donations of food and winter clothing for the women staying at the shelter.

Copyright 2013 KLTV. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly