A new report has found Hurricane Florence evacuees with disabilities endured what it described as unsafe and disrespectful conditions. 

The report was compiled by Disability Rights North Carolina. It includes examples of conditions witnessed by DRNC staff during the 2018 storm.

According to the report, people who were unable to climb stairs were stuck on the first floor of the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Winston-Salem. Evacuees were separated from the only available bathrooms by steep stairs. A service elevator was unavailable for long stretches, causing some evacuees to wear adult diapers.

In Goldsboro, a special medial center was set up in an area at risk for flooding.

And DRNC found “compassion fatigue” among managers and staff, resulting in disrespectful treatment of those seeking shelter.

The report urges federal, state and local emergency management officials to be better prepared to ensure the well-being of people with disabilities during natural disasters.

State emergency officials told The News and Observer they agree that better shelter facilities should be located. The American Red Cross was also receptive to the report's findings and will work with DRNC on training.

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