Segregated Katrina Relief

I have been working among the many churches in the Waco area in our cooperative planning for receiving and offering aid and shelter to evacuees from hurricane Katrina’s wake.

Several churches that have opened as shelters have done so in a very discriminatory way. There is a segment of the population that is strictly unwelcome in these shelters. People who will be turned away. It is ok, they say, because “there are other shelters for those people.”

The rejected class is those who are single. Some churches are setting up specifically and only for families, and thus are intentionally exluding single people.

When I asked about this prejudice, I was told it was valid because “You couldn’t trust an 18 year old single man in a shelter with women and teenage girls.”

….And I suppose you can’t trust any pastors because Jim Bakker once had an affair.

Curious thing is, one of these churches put out a call for clergy to call and volunteer to help with counseling. I was going to call until I realized I wasn’t welcome there. I’m single.

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