Wednesday, July 26, 2006

FEMA: No to Trailer Park Free Speech

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) officials are not allowing media assess to governmental trailer parks unless escorted at all times by a FEMA agent. For example, a guard in a Morgan City, LA trailer park ordered a reporter and photographer off of the property after they were invited by Dekotha Duvall, a trailer resident; called police when the reporter attempted the "forbidden" act of handing Duvall a business card; and then commanded another resident, Pansy Ardeneaux to not speak through a chain-link fence to reporters (and to return to her trailer home). "If a resident invites the media to the trailer, they have to be escorted by a FEMA representative who sits in on the interview: that's just policy," Rachel Rodi, spokesperson for FEMA said. Congressman Bobby Jindal (R-LA) impugned FEMA's position, stating, "You don't lose your fundamental rights just because you're living in temporary housing: it's an outrageous pattern of behavior." The Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) asked FEMA to evaluate the constitutionality of its policy. The letter stated, "We are outraged by the arrogance and contempt for public discourse on display in Louisiana, a year after FEMA's performance in the wake of Katrina earned it widespread criticism."

Cf. http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=51240.

4 comments:

piperfromtn said...

Too bad FEMA wasn't in Paula Jone's trailer park in Arkansas a few years back.  Lot's of things come to mind...
Bubba: "Hey Paula, call a friend so he can have a date too..."

jakeho said...

I'm sure that she wouldn't have had trouble finding an escort.

olcanton said...

ahh, FEMA is doing a superb job of restoring its integrity post Katrina.

jakeho said...

What are they thinking, or are they?