Published: Aug 23, 2010 10:14 PM EDT
Updated: Aug 23, 2010 7:14 PM EDT

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The oil has stopped flowing into the Gulf of Mexico, but many of the people hit hardest by the huge spill are struggling as badly as ever.

Large charities providing food to coastal communities have run out of money, homeless shelters are filling up, and demand for drug and alcohol counseling is up.

In yet another source of anxiety for fishermen and others, the federal government took over the handling of oil-spill damage claims from BP on Monday.

Many along the Gulf are waiting to see how Obama administration appointee Kenneth Feinberg administers the $20 billion victims compensation fund set up by the company.

Already, there are indications he intends to be stricter than BP in many cases when it comes to handing out checks to individuals and businesses.