As the floods gushed throughout Acadiana, people came together to help those in need, using boats of all different kinds and sizes to help save those whose homes were being ravaged by the waters.

Here in Acadiana, these heroes who patrol the waters and seek to rescue others are known as the “Cajun Navy.” But, many of these volunteers were turned away from helping others by state agencies, which has led to much frustration.

State Senator Jonathan Perry is looking to eliminate that and put more authority behind these Good Samaritans with the power of legislation.

“At the end of the day, there are going to be two things that are going to be the hurdle when you approach it from the state’s standpoint,” points out Sen. Perry. “Liability is going to be number one for them. They don’t want the liability of someone going out to rescue someone and then not being able to find them (the rescuers) and, secondly, there’s a cost.”

But Sen. Perry says it’s “very doable but will take some work.” He compares it to volunteer firefighters. Both come with the same liability.

Sen. Perry is working on a policy that would look into training these people for these kinds of situations so they can have certification to show law enforcement officials, which would allow them into the devastated areas instead of being turned away. And, the state would not be liable for them.

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