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One of the first news outlets to report on abuse of these financial instruments was the New York Daily News, who broke the story that two of the cards had been used in Atlanta to buy $800 Louis Vuitton handbags. (That claim has been substantiated by MSNBC's Abrams Report; the store confirmed to them that it happened.) Others have been spotted in adult entertainment venues — according to a report by KPRC Channel 2 in Houston, the wife of a strip club manager in that city said her husband has seen patrons from Louisiana offering FEMA and Red Cross debit cards. A manager at Caligula XXI Gentlemen's Club told KPRC that he has seen at least one card used at his club. "Abby," a bartender at Baby Dolls, another strip club in Houston, said customers are paying for drinks with what may be FEMA or Red Cross debit cards.
While the FEMA-issued card program has been brought to an end, the American Red Cross continues to give out debit cards, called Client Assistance Cards. Like FEMA's program, each disaster victim must agree to use the cards for emergency needs, such as food, housing, and clothing. Those too have been abused; for example, Red Cross records show one was used for entertainment items at a Best Buy (a computers, stereos, TVs, and other electronics store) in Kentucky for more than $1,000.
Originally posted by Simulacra
If the government gave me $800 to compensate their horrible response time...etc, I would use that money to buy whatever I desire.
Originally posted by FredT
While it seemed like a good plan at the time, the temptation to use the FEMA debit cards for such essential disaster recovery supplies such as an $800 Louis Vuitton handbag.
I guess it is better to look good than to feel good :shk: I wonder how much of that money will be used for what it was truly attended for.
Originally posted by parrhesia
I don't have a home... but damn! I look good!