Congress has approved $51.8 billion in additional funding for the relief and recovery efforts in the Gulf Coast areas hit by Hurricane Katrina, including $1.6 billion for manufactured housing to provide temporary housing for 100,000 displaced persons.The Federal Emergency Management Agency has already spent $3.3 billion for mobile and manufactured homes. A FEMA spokeswoman said 3,500 units are ready for deployment, 12,000 units are en route to the disaster area, and 88,000 units are on order. FEMA also has contracted with several large construction firms to prepare housing parks and build temporary housing. More than one million people were forced to flee their homes because of the hurricane and 163,000 Louisiana citizens are residing in shelters. Meanwhile, concerns are growing that the hurricane victims cannot be kept in stadiums and large temporary shelters much longer because of crime and other problems. "It is the next crisis," Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., said during a roundtable discussion about the relief efforts attended by housing organizations and members of the House Financial Services subcommittee on housing. The congresswoman recently toured several shelters in Louisiana. A Catholic Charities representative said her organization is getting ready to put rape crisis counselors in some shelters because public authorities cannot keep them safe. "It is horrible," she said. "We have to have transitional housing right away."

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