RI – Crossroads RI, the state’s leading provider of services and
support for families and individuals experiencing homelessness, warns
that families and individuals experiencing homelessness are more
vulnerable to infectious diseases due to lack of access to primary care,
mobility, and poor health status from extended episodes of
homelessness. Crossroads RI has received guidance from the U.S.
Department of Housing and Urban Development and is in regular
communications with the Rhode Island Department of Health.
and families experiencing homelessness may face greater risks of
potential COVID-19 infections; however, they should still seek shelter
and support to find permanent housing. Crossroads RI is taking necessary
precautions to protect staff, clients and guests from infection,” said
Crossroads Chief Operating Officer Michelle Wilcox. “Crossroads is in
regular communication with the Rhode Island Department of Health, and we
have plans in place to respond in the event of any suspected or
confirmed case in our shelters. There have not been any suspected or
confirmed cases at Crossroads facilities at this time.”
RI is implementing the CDC’s recommendations on how to best protect
staff, clients, and guests, including plans to isolate anyone who shows
sign of infection, identifying space across Crossroads’ network of
shelters to accommodate clients with mild respiratory symptoms who do
not require hospital care, and making plans for higher potential usage
of shelter during an outbreak. Crossroads RI is urging all staff,
clients, and guests to take necessary precautions, including washing
hands and maintaining at least three feet of space. Crossroads is
providing information to clients, staff, and guests detailing precaution
measures in multiple languages.
Measures are being taken
to minimize the number of staff who have face-to-face interactions with
clients. Additionally, Crossroads RI will reassign staff and volunteers
at high risk of severe COVID-19 (older individuals and those with
underlying health conditions) away from work that provides care to sick
A link to HUD’s interim guidance for homeless providers is available here.