Shared by Howard County Government on Facebook:
In an effort to provide safe locations for those facing homelessness amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Howard County Department of Community Resources and Services (DCRS) has been working with local partners to provide these individuals with non-congregate housing. DCRS has partnered with a local hotel in Columbia to provide 27 homeless individuals, including children and unaccompanied youth, with such housing. These individuals are receiving access to meals and daily on-site case management. Also, thanks to generous donations from faith-based and community partners, caseworkers and clients at the hotel site are being provided with basic personal protective equipment (PPE), such as face masks and hand sanitizer.
In addition, DCRS’ Offices of Community Partnerships and Aging and Independence are collaborating with several government agencies, community groups and faith-based organizations to coordinate homeless outreach. The coalition includes the Howard County Police Department, Howard County Office of Emergency Management, Howard County Health Department (HCHD) and the County’s Department of Corrections, in addition to Humanim, Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center and Howard County General Hospital Johns Hopkins Medicine (HCGH). Together, DCRS, HCGH and Grassroots are developing a hospital triage and discharge plan for any COVID-19 positive homeless clients released from HCGH. Also, HCHD is coordinating with Grassroots to determine appropriate levels of PPE at the center and other triage locations, such as hotels, and is providing guidance to their medical providers.