March 25, 2020 update regarding COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)
Update on COVID-19 Homeless Services
Under the direction of the Washoe County COVID-19 Incident Management Team, a Homeless Services division has been created and is actively working to ensure essential services are provided to our region’s homeless population during this crisis.
As part of that of that emergency response, 19 Sani-Hut portable restrooms with hand sanitizer have been temporarily placed in a variety of areas throughout Washoe County to provide our homeless population with access to restrooms. Four Sani-Huts have been placed in Sparks, and 15 have been placed in Reno, the majority of those in the downtown corridor.
Bottled water has also been secured, for general distribution among the homeless population.
About a dozen hand-washing stations will be temporarily deployed soon in the region, once the weather warms up (so the water doesn’t freeze).
The Reno Events Center has been established as a temporary overnight homeless shelter. Nightly operational hours are from 8 p.m. to 8 a.m. There are 375 mats/beds currently available. Running water is also available inside the Events Center.
Screening process: Individuals are assessed at entry. If COVID indicators are suspected, individuals are directed to the Community Assistance Center (CAC) Record Street campus for medical screening and isolation. There is a limit of one personal bag per admittance, with some exceptions. Potential occupants are also being screened for weapons, drugs and alcohol - all of which are not allowed in the Events Center or CAC.
Those being housed at the CAC are limited to Veterans, those who need to be isolated, or those with special needs.There are 35 beds available at the CAC.
There are currently no known COVID cases at the Events Center or CAC. Social distancing is being strongly enforced at both locations.
Regional Website Launched and Press Conference Held
The Regional Information Center today launched a new regional website for COVID-19 information.
A link to today’s press conference can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i4PNvxpw8Cc