Orlando Mayor: We’ve taken care of 256 victims
Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer said that the city’s family assistance center has helped hundreds of people in the aftermath of Sunday’s mass shooting.
The city launched the center after the attack at the gay night club, Pulse, that killed 49 people and injured dozens more.
It also started a fundraiser, One Orlando, to help respond to the crisis.
Dyer said at a press conference on Friday that the center has helped 256 individuals with financial support, grief counseling and obtaining visas for family members. Dyer said victims and their families have received over 200 free airline tickets, and the center has also helped with funeral arrangements.
Victims have also received money that can be used for groceries and rent, according to Dyer.
“We’ve had a significant impact reaching out to victims and their families,” the mayor said.
There are 35 different agencies at the center ready to help anyone affected by the shooting. Victims and their families can either visit the center in person or call 407-246-4357 for assistance.
Kenneth Feinberg has been called in to consult. Feinberg administered the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund as well as One Fund Boston, created in the wake of the Boston marathon bombing.
Orange County Commissioner Pete Clark said at the press conference that the center would continue to provide longer term support.
“It’s like when you suffer a loss and everyone leaves, and you’re sitting in your home thinking, ‘Okay, what do I do now?'” he said. “We’re going to be there for them.”
Dyer said arrangements have been made to bury victims at Greenwood Cemetery, which the city owns. He said one victim has already been buried there and that more will be buried this weekend.
Dyer will only attend a funeral if asked to do so by a family.
“I do not want to intrude on private funeral services,” he said. “These are private ceremonies. People are hurting and they’re burying their loved ones.”