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New Orleans bereft of women

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NEW ORLEANS, Nov 25, 2005 (UPI via COMTEX) -- Women seem to have become a rare sight in many sections of New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

At a bar in the French Quarter on a recent night, there was not a single unattached woman, observers said.

City officials guess New Orleans now has a population of 150,000 during the day and 75,000 at night after commuters have left, The Los Angeles Times reports.

Sally Forman, the mayor's press secretary, says: "There's this strange feeling that it's all men in town."

Part of the reason is that the wives and children of professional men are settled elsewhere until the end of the school semester, while the men work during the week and leave for the weekends.

Sociologist Carl Bankston III says the skewed male-female ratio is probably temporary but says the faster it changes, the better for the city.

"If people don't set up households, they're not setting up families, which means you don't have a permanent population or a permanent tax base," he said.

A 23-year-old male bar patron said: "I tell you what, if single women come down here, they'll find a lot of guys."


Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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