Evacuees Begin Finding Ways to Leave Shelters

9-8-05 - New Orleans evacuee Tony Owens is busy trying to settle in to a new life in Dallas, setting up a post office box, trying to get unemployment benefits, searching for a job and a place other than a shelter to live.

"I'm grateful ... but I have to get out on my own and start a life," Owens said Wednesday. "I don't want to be stuck."

Owens, 47, has been living since Saturday in a shelter set up in Decker Detention Center in Dallas. She is one of thousands of Louisiana residents displaced by the damage of Hurricane Katrina.

"This is not the life I had planned for myself," she said. "I'm ready to get out of here."

The need to get on with their lives has refugees in shelters across the state slowly moving out. Some are staying in Texas. Others are catching buses or taking flights to other states.