Red Cross working to restore communications at shelters


The American Red Cross is doing everything it can to restore communications with its 300 shelters in the region devastated by Hurricane Katrina, the agency�s chief information officer said Friday.

The agency is making progress but �this disaster is on a scale we�ve never seen before,� said Steve Cooper, the Red Cross�s CIO and the former CIO at the Homeland Security Department.

�We have to plan that New Orleans as a city really won�t exist for the next six months,� Cooper said. Biloxi, Miss., is just as hard hit, he noted.

The Red Cross created a task force on Sept. 1 with several of its private-sector partners, including Microsoft, Cisco Systems and Cingular, Cooper said. These companies flew in personnel to provide satellite connectivity to all Red Cross shelters in the disaster area, he said.


- ferg