On Monday, December 5, one day before the Occupy NOLA encampment at Duncan Plaza would be evicted by the city, the New Orleans Police Department started transferring homeless residents to Exodus House, a non-profit service provider on Ursulines Avenue. Between Monday and Tuesday, 43 people were taken to the facility, reports Exodus House director Donald Wilkerson.
"It's probably not going to be a lot of housing. It's going to be a lot of services," like medical treatment and food stamps, Wilkerson said then. "Housing might be available for some people. That's the end goal. But we've got to get that other stuff out of the way."
However, Wilkerson, who called after press time for our print edition news story, gives us an update on his group's progress in placing the homeless from Duncan Plaza into some type of shelter.
"Mostly all the people, except eight, have been placed somewhere," Wilkerson says. By "somewhere," he means temporary shared living facilities in houses throughout the city.
"They have housing managers who live in these homes," who work with Exodus House to provide them food, medical care and other needs. Exodus House hasn't yet managed to get anyone into permanent housing, but the staff is working on it.
"We’re setting them up with service providers who can help them get set up in permanent housing," he says.