Homelessness and pandemic planning for youth and others in Canada
The Homeless Hub – an observatory on homelessness in Canada – provides a vast array of resources and current information for priority at-risk populations.
Public washrooms for the most vulnerable
The Region of Waterloo includes a list of open public washrooms for use by vulnerable community members
Public porta-potties installed as part of New Westminster’s COVID-19 response
The decision to provide portable washroom facilities is to ensure access to bathrooms for vulnerable populations, who may otherwise not have them, given all of the businesses being shuttered. It’s also for other residents.
Public washrooms for unsheltered persons considered an essential service in BC
This includes hygiene facilities (toilets, handwash stations, showers)
Portable washrooms open, campground closed to visitors as district deals with COVID-19
The District of Hope has added handicap accessible portable toilets in Memorial Park. They’ve also placed hand wash stations there as well, after closing public washrooms last week.
Public washrooms in Sechelt parks open from 7am to 9pm
Hamilton working with agencies to provide access to washrooms/showers for vulnerable residents
Information found on Hamilton’s Twitter account
Toronto Council Fire Native Cultural Centre posts lists of open Toronto Public Washroom locations
With so many businesses and public spaces closed, community members & clients have few places to use washrooms during COVID19
University of Chicago providing emergency support to address immediate needs of South Side local residents, businesses, and nonprofits
Through UChicago’s Partnering for Community Impact initiative, support will come through three main programs: preparing and delivering meals to South Side residents; supporting South Side businesses and their employees; and supporting South Side nonprofit organizations and the vulnerable populations they serve. The programs will help address the urgent food security needs on the South Side, as well as begin to bridge the financial and resource gap for local businesses and community-based nonprofits.
France Is Putting Domestic Abuse Victims in Hotels During Coronavirus Lockdown
Reports of domestic abuse have spiked by about 30% since France went into lockdown. France has created a secret code word for them to discreetly seek help in pharmacies, in response to a huge increase in domestic abuse during the coronavirus lockdown.
Minneapolis Offers People Experiencing Homelessness a Simple Gift: A Safe Place for Their Stuff
To support Minneapolis’ unhoused residents, the city has followed in the footsteps of other cities like San Diego and Los Angeles by partnering with a local organization to pilot a storage program for those experiencing homelessness. The pilot comes as a record number of people are experiencing homelessness across the state. The program allows people experiencing homelessness to store their belongings in bins located in a secure room. Belongings are checked in and out of bins by volunteers from Minneapolis’ Downtown Improvement District, the city’s partner in the venture.
Together Apart initiative directs community members to local businesses to support
With many businesses around the National Capital region temporarily shut down or re-imagining their offerings due to COVID-19, this site is a resource for residents to find local spots to order from and support.
Montreal declares local state of emergency over fears of COVID-19 outbreak among city’s homeless
The declaration of a local state of emergency gives the city the power to act quickly to take any measures it deems necessary. Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante said the city now has the power to take over private properties to shelter people and to order needed supplies or food quickly, as needed. Plante said the city is planning new, temporary homeless shelters in the coming days, as well as more outdoor day centres to provide food and other essential services.
‘Isolation shelter’ in works for homeless people in Abbotsford with COVID-19 symptoms
The City is finalizing a COVID-19 response strategy for vulnerable individuals which will include the activation of an isolation site for individuals to rest, recover, or transition into further health and housing supports.
Ottawa opens COVID-19 isolation and treatment centre for homeless
A local recreation centre in Ottawa is becoming an isolation and treatment centre for homeless people with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19. Ottawa Inner City Health says homeless people can be tested for the virus by a mobile assessment van, paramedics, as well as the typical assessment centre and hospitals.
City of Lethbridge is putting resources in place to help the city’s homeless population, including new spaces for social distancing and self-isolation
The Fritz Sick gymnasium will transition into a temporary homeless shelter to provide more square footage than the current homeless shelter. Rooms have also been secured at a local motel as a self-isolation unit for the homeless population.
City of Peterborough to move men’s shelters to Sport and Wellness Centre temporarily to provide better social distancing
Peterborough city and county announced a plan for sheltering homeless people in gyms at the vacated Peterborough Sport and Wellness Centre. People staying at the Brock Mission, or the city’s emergency shelter, will go stay in cots at the Sport and Wellness Centre starting Wednesday night. The idea is to allow homeless space for social distancing.
University of Ottawa building will house vulnerable families during the COVID-19
Around 65 people will move into the building located at 585 King Edward Ave. on Monday after a request was made by the City of Ottawa. Some of these new residents may have been exposed to people who carry the coronavirus, while others are exhibiting symptoms of the illness, hence the need to quickly house them so that they can self-isolate.
City of Toronto acquires hotels, rental buildings for homeless in response to coronavirus
Toronto Councillor Joe Cressy said five hotels have been acquired with another five in the process of being secured. Two vacant rental buildings are also in the process of being acquired and 50 permanent housing units have been identified. He added that 19 households have secured permanent housing. The latest acquisitions are in addition to the nine existing sites the city has already opened to facilitate social distancing within the shelter system. Cressy added that the city has provided funding to five community partners that run overnight programs to stay open all day to provide daytime spaces for those experiencing homelessness. Two sites are now open and three others will open shortly.
Long-term care facilities across Nova Scotia will be provided with iPads
Among other initiatives, the Department of Health and Wellness will distribute up to 800 iPads across the province to long-term care homes so residents can connect with family and friends; the tablets will begin arriving at facilities in April.
Guelph launches Supported Isolation Centre for homeless facing coronavirus
A group of community and health-care organizations opened the Supported Isolation Centre (SIC) in downtown Guelph. This particular model is not a medical model, meaning that the people who are there are not being medically monitored; they’re being supported to self-isolate.
Le travail inquiétant des femmes dans la pandémie COVID-19
Au Canada, les femmes sont nettement plus inquiètes que les hommes au sujet de la crise COVID-19. Par exemple, un récent sondage réalisé par Abacus Data a révélé que 49 % des femmes ont déclaré se sentir “très inquiètes” de l’épidémie, contre 33 % des hommes. Trente-sept pour cent des hommes ont déclaré qu’ils n’étaient “pas du tout inquiets” ou “peu inquiets” à propos de l’épidémie.
First Vancouver community centre opens to protect homeless from COVID-19
All community centres in Vancouver were closed to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. City officials have opened some centres to be used for homeless people and others who can’t self-isolate such as tenants in hotels, where sharing a washroom and other facilities is common.
Community building stories and ideas sent in by Tamarack Institute members
Stories include: How Cochrane AB is fostering community through technology; Virtual Storytimes in Woodstock, ON; Edmonton, Alberta is staying connected with community postcards; Waterloo ON’s window walks; and Hamilton’s caremongering supports
Cambridge to pay restaurants to make meals for homeless people
The city is launching a program that will pay local restaurants to make and deliver boxed or bagged lunches to nearby homeless shelters. Working with Central Square Business Improvement District and Harvard Square Business Association, the goal is to deliver about 1,800 to 2,000 meals to nine different shelters in a week.
Connecting neighbours in Vancouver looking for help during the COVID-19 pandemic
Coming Together Vancouver brings provides connections to share resources, extend a helping hand to our neighbours, show solidarity for healthcare workers and the vulnerable, and highlight social movements that are fighting for access to healthcare, housing, and workers’ rights.
Health association of African Canadians updates on COVID-19
Health Association of African Canadians, NS Health Professionals and the Black Cultural Centre is providing interactive updates on COVID-19 and people of African descent
Emergency food service delivers hot meals, food boxes across Mohawk community
Kahnawake is located south of Montreal and has positive cases of the virus. They launched an emergency food service that is providing hot meals twice a day for elders and those with limited mobility or dietary restrictions. An expansion of an existing food bank service also started delivering a food box to those struggling financially but who are able to cook for themselves.
The Assembly of First Nations declares a state of emergency
Calling for increased resources for First Nations on a “needs and equity basis,” with specific consideration for northern, remote and isolated communities.
Volunteers help people in Toronto by bike
The Toronto Bike Brigade calls for volunteer bicycle riders in Toronto to help deliver goods to people unable to leave their homes