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Top News:

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will be providing $50 million in immediate short-term relief to multiple national and community organizations working to help households and communities being harmed by the COVID-19 pandemic. NLIHC’s Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition is exceptionally thankful to be among the recipients.

Webinars

The Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition will lead recurring national calls on Coronavirus and Homelessness/Housing every Monday at 2:30pmET. We are thoroughly devoted to ensuring members of our community, from across the country, are fully equipped with the information and resources they need to respond to this national outbreak of Coronavirus and its impact on people experiencing homelessness and low-income households. Register for these calls at: https://tinyurl.com/ru73qan 

Congressional Recommendations

The NLIHC-led Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition is pushing for a broad array of resources and protections, including emergency rental assistance and eviction prevention assistance, a national moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, and emergency funds for homelessness service providers, housing authorities, and housing providers, among other recommendations. For more information, download our recommendations on the federal response to the coronavirus below. You can also visit our dedicated webpage outlining our requests to Congress.

Click here to find your members of Congress and urge them to provide resources to help ensure housing stability for low-income households and people experiencing homelessness.

NLIHC Materials

National Updates

House Democrats are moving quickly on plans to create a fourth coronavirus stimulus package. “This fourth package will be about recovery” said Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). Some predict an even harder battle to get the bill passed

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the creation of a new House Select Committee on the Coronavirus which will be tasked with overseeing stimulus funding.

Congressman Jerry McNerney (D-CA) sent a letter to the Trump Administration pressing them for details about how federal agencies are working to ensure the proper care of America’s homeless population during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) sat down with VOX to talk about a plan for combatting Coronavirus – boosting the construction of affordable housing is a major element. 

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) released an op-ed calling for a more grassroots stimulus.

Representative Al Green (D-TX) introduced a bill to provide support for fair housing enforcement activities associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Representative Steve Stivers (R-OH) introduced two pieces of legislation to protect public housing residents during the coronavirus pandemic. The first, the Protecting Our Elderly Residents Act, requires HUD to establish guidelines to limit the spread of COVID-19 in elderly housing properties and public housing. The second, the PHA Public Housing Flexible Funding Act, allows public housing authorities to use operating and capital funds to address the ongoing public health emergency.

Representative Ted Budd (R-NC) introduced the Informed Resident Notification Act, which requires public housing authorities to notify all residents in a public dwelling when a COVID-19 outbreak is detected.

Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) introduced S. 3534, the Pandemic Assistance Disaster Act, which would clarify the ability of FEMA to provide financial assistance directly to individuals during a pandemic, including the current coronavirus outbreak.

Representative Denny Heck (D-WA) introduced the Emergency Rental Assistance Act of 2020, which would increase short-term rental assistance for most Americans by expanding the Emergency Solutions Grant Program.

Representatives Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) introduced legislation, The Public Health Emergency Shelter Act, that would provide $15.5 billion in emergency grants for homeless assistance.

Representatives Jesύs “Chuy” García (D-IL) and Barbara Lee (D-CA) introduced the Rental Eviction Moratorium Act, which institutes a nationwide eviction ban that self-terminates six months after the President’s Emergency Declaration is ended by FEMA.

Representative Nydia M. Veláquez (D-NY) introduced legislation that temporarily suspends rent contribution requirements owed by tenants living public housing or those who receive Housing Choice Vouchers during the coronavirus emergency.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention issued guidance cautioning against the clearing of homeless encampments during the community spread of COVID-19. The move was celebrated by the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty’s Housing not Handcuffs Campaign – of which NLIHC is a part.

There are currently 45 states and 3 territories under a Major Disaster Declaration for COVID-19. The only states without them are Alaska, Idaho, Vermont, Wyoming, and Minnesota. See the full list here.

Scientists are seeing abnormal warming in the Gulf of Mexico – indicating an increased risk of tornados and hurricanes in the coming year.

FEMA laid out reimbursement guidelines for Emergency Medical Care and Non-Congregate Sheltering, elaborating on the existing rules allowing for both of these expenses to be covered by FEMA’s Public Assistance Category B program.

FEMA’s Public Assistance (PA) program – one category of which is operating nationally after President Trump’s National Declaration of an Emergency – will have simplified forms and application processes – allowing applicants (State, local, tribal, governments and eligible nonprofits) to apply directly through the PA website.

NLIHC has released a fact sheet on Public Assistance funding uses and eligibility. This sheet will be updated as new information is released.

FEMA also released additional explanations on the Public Assistance program for tribal governments.

A memo from DHS has authorized FEMA to fund 100% of the emergency assistance activities conducted by National Guard units under state control in California, New York, and Washington.

As FEMA takes the reigns of pandemic response, confusion and frustration are mounting both inside and outside the agency.

FEMA laid out reimbursement guidelines for National Guard activities in areas with Major Disaster Declarations. FEMA will fully reimburse states for eligible National Guard deployments.

FEMA extended its grace period for Flood Insurance renewal premiums. The new grace period will be extended until June 15.

In a letter to Congress, OMB requested $400 million dollars for HUD, specifically for Homeless Assistance Grants.

President Trump announced a suspension in foreclosures and evictions for Federal Housing Administration-insured mortgages for single family properties for the next 60 days.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson spoke at a White House Coronavirus Task Force press briefing over the weekend. The Secretary spoke about the agency’s move to institute a eviction and foreclosure moratorium in HUD-owned properties and championed the Public Housing Agencies doing the same.

Acting HUD Deputy Secretary/Assistance Secretary for Housing and Federal Housing Commission released a video message to FHA stakeholders regarding potential processing delays, and to remind FHA servicers of their obligation to offer every available loss mitigation option to distressed borrowers in order to prevent foreclosure.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson appeared on Fox News to discuss the federal response to the coronavirus. His comments touched on HUD’s work coordinating CoC’s and public health departments.

HUD announced that DHS will be recognizing residential and shelter workers as essential. Exempting them from stay at home orders that have begun to spread across the country.

HUD announced a series of waivers for CoC, ESG, and HOPWA Program regulations designed to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and mitigate economic impact of the pandemic.

HUD announced that it would be quickly releasing $200 million in Indian Housing Block Grants to American Indian Tribes and Tribally Designated Housing Entities across the country to respond to COVID-19. The money was approved in the CARES Act.

FHFA announced that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will be offering multifamily property owners mortgage forbearance on the condition that they suspend all evictions for renters unable to pay rent due to the impact of coronavirus.

FHFA also will be providing flexible alternatives to current requirements regarding the appraisal and employment verification of homes being bought, sold, and refinanced through Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

FHFA and Freddie Mac released additional details on a plan to offer multifamily property owners mortgage forbearance on the condition that they suspend all evictions for renters unable to pay rent due to the impact of coronavirus.

The USDA announced that it would be suspending foreclosures and evictions for 60 days on USDA-financed homes across rural America.

The Department of Agriculture announced it would be suspending foreclosures on borrowers with USDA Single-Family Housing Direct (SFHD) loans and evictions of persons in SFHD secured properties for a period of 60 days.

USDA Rural Development launched a COVID-19 resource page to keep stakeholders, partners, and customers aware of new developments.

USDA Rural Development announced that it would be granting temporary exception to interior inspection appraisals and verbal verification of employment for its single-family housing guaranteed loan program.

USDA Rural Development announced that it would be implementing a number of measures to assist rural residents and their communities. This includes waiving late payments in multifamily housing, placing a moratorium on foreclosures of its Single-Family Housing Direct Loans, and more.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will be providing $50 million in immediate short-term relief to multiple national and community organizations working to help households and communities being harmed by the COVID-19 pandemic. NLIHC’s Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition is exceptionally thankful to be among the recipients.

The Washington Post covered COVID-19’s impact on low income renters and what happens when a tenant is evicted during a pandemic. NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel was interviewed for the story.

Mother Jones interviewed NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel on the impact the COVID-19 pandemic is having on individuals experiencing homelessness and the shelters that serve them.

US News and World Report reported on last week’s DHRC conference call, detailing the challenges individuals experiencing homelessness and the housing insecure will experience during the pandemic.

The AP released analysis showing that the vast majority of American renters would not be assisted by HUD’s decision to pause evictions and foreclosures for a 60-day period.

Vox covered the threat to individuals experiencing homelessness posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The NYTimes covered the ongoing struggle to head off evictions due to the pandemic at the federal, state, and local level.

An article from the Brookings Institute covered ways in which homeless populations and individuals living in substandard or unaffordable housing are uniquely susceptible to an epidemic.

Popular Science released an article covering homelessness and vulnerability to COVID-19.

Wired is reporting that many individuals experiencing homelessness are turning to web forums for best practices to avoid COVID-19 infection.

Forbes covered the importance of housing the homeless in the age of COVID-19.

Essence covered warnings from the nation’s African American Mayors calling for a targeted approach to boost and sustain Black communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Disjointed and sometimes conflicting messages from banks and the federal government are leaving mortgage borrowers confused on the best course of action says USA Today.

The Connecticut Mirror reported on the vulnerability that Transgender Individuals have to COVID-19. According to recent research, 30% of those served at drop-in shelters, by outreach teams, and other housing programs identify as LGBTQ. NBC News also covered the subject – featuring interviews with LGBTQ individuals experiencing homelessness.

The VA is strongly encouraging holders of veterans loans to abstain from initiating foreclosure proceedings during the COVID-19 pandemic

The NLIHC-led Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition will continue to push for a broad array of resources and protections, including emergency rental assistance and eviction prevention assistance, a national moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, and emergency funds for homelessness service providers, housing authorities, and housing providers, among other recommendations. For more information, see DHRC’s full list of recommendations, which will continue to be expanded and refined. 

NLIHC and the National Women’s Law Center released a fact sheet on housing priorities during the COVID-19 pandemic. These recommendations cover both the need for immediate housing assistance for individuals experiencing homelessness, as well as structural fixes to address the underlying reasons for our country’s persistent housing crisis. You can also view

The Anti-Eviction Mapping Project released a nationwide map of eviction moratoriums and tenant protections.

Stateside created a 2020 state and local government COVID-19 response chart to track state legislative actions, executive agency actions, and local government actions related to the pandemic.

The National Consumer Law Center launched a new COVID-19 & Consumer Protections page to provide updates on their efforts to protect renters and homeowners during the pandemic. The organization is also offering free access to the digital edition of “Surviving Debt: Expert Advice for Getting Out of Financial Trouble” – the NCLC’s comprehensive guide to navigating debt for consumers and their advocates.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities released an updated overview of changes to unemployment insurance payments and eligibility. The center also released a list of recommendations to broaden eligibility for stimulus rebates.

The Center for Policy Development released a table showing the distribution of CDBG supplemental funding released by the CARES Act.

The National Conference of State Legislatures will be collecting federal agency announcements related to COVID-19 on it’s website.

A report from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health contains recommendations for metro areas dealing with COVID-19 response. It includes a recommendation for providing alternative housing to individuals experiencing homelessness and others lacking space for quarantine.

With the passage of the third coronavirus stimulus package on Friday, advocates are now beginning to push federal agencies to release funding as soon as possible. For more details on what’s in the bill for housing and homelessness, see NLIHC’s full analysis and chart. An analysis of the eviction moratorium found in the bill is available here from the National Housing Law Project.

The National Alliance to End Homelessness will be holding a webinar series covering a wide variety of topics related to COVID-19 and homelessness. The first - covering federal funding opportunities - will be happening this coming Wednesday at 3:00pmET. The second – covering national protocol on shelter operations during the pandemic - will be happening this Thursday at 3:30pmET. Additional webinars are planned, covering street outreach on April 7 and FEMA’s COVID-19 efforts on April 9.

The National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty’s Housing Not Handcuffs Campaign released a letter template for organizations to send their elected officials calling for a moratorium on the clearing of homeless encampments during the pandemic.

National Innovation Services released an equity framework for emergency management and response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The National Lawyers Guild released a Know Your Rights guide for individuals living under a state of emergency.

NLIHC has developed a map showing housing and homelessness data as well as the number of COVID-19 cases for every county in the continental United States.

NLIHC and the National Housing Law Project sent a letter to HUD and the USDA asking the agencies to take aggressive steps to preserve the housing stability of low-income communities.

Enterprise Community Partners has released a webpage containing policy recommendations and resources for state and local leaders.

Network Lobby for Catholic Social Justice released a series of asks regarding the Coronavirus/COVID-19 stimulus bill that includes increased homeless assistance funding and a halt on evictions and foreclosures.

The Housing Assistance Council released a letter calling for a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions for USDA Sec. 502 housing. They have also released a page of resources on COVID-19/Rural Housing.

The Center for American Progress released a blog article calling for increases assistance for homeless individuals and families in the face of the coronavirus.

The Urban Institute released a special website cataloging their scholars’ response to policy moves as the pandemic continues.

Urban Institute’s Housing Matters blog looked at the effects of pausing evictions and how any moratorium must be connected with robust rental assistance.

The National Housing Law Project also released a Model Eviction Moratorium Act to serve as an example for jurisdictions working to stop evictions during the COVID-19 crisis.

Lone Star Legal Aid released a blog post on the relationship between Coronavirus isolation and domestic violence.

Healthdata.org released this set of projections of hospital resources based on COVID-19 fatalities. The data can be broken down by state.

Policy and Guidance

National Guidance

Steps Healthcare Facilities Can Take Now to Prepare for Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

A basic overview from the CDC for Healthcare facilities preparing to deal with COVID-19 with a focus on workforce notification and coordination with public agencies.

Interim Guidance for Homeless Service Providers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

The first guidance issued for homeless service providers from the CDC. Includes checklists for screening, isolating, and coordinating with clients at shelters.

Interim Environmental Cleaning and Disinfection Recommendations for US Community Facilities with Suspected/Confirmed Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

These are disinfectant guidelines for schools, community centers, public businesses, where there is a suspected case of COVID-19.

People Experiencing Unsheltered Homelessness Interim Guidance

CDC: Interim Guidance for Homeless Service Providers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

The CDC has posted a simple screening tool that can be used at the entry of homeless shelters to identify people with symptoms of respiratory infection. If someone screens positive for symptoms, it is suggested they be directed to somewhere they can safely stay. 

A Journal of Urban Health study titled "Homelessness and the Response to Emerging Infectious Disease Outbreaks: Lessons from SARS" highlights the need for an outbreak preparedness plan that accounts for unique issues related to those experiencing homelessness. The study identified lessons learned in the areas of communication, infection control, isolation and quarantine, and resource allocation. 

The HHScollection of federal guidance, news, and responses to COVID-19 now includes a memorandum titled "Questions and answers about TANF and the COVID-19 pandemic". This tool addresses questions and summarizes the flexibilities in the TANF program to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Infectious Disease Toolkit for CoCs

This set of resources includes information on preventing and managing the spread of infectious disease for people experiencing homelessness, in shelters, and encampments. It has guidelines for emergency hygiene practices, communicating with clients and public health agencies, guidelines for isolation and more.

Interim Guidance for Homeless Services Practitioners

Guidance for pre-outbreak and outbreak measures to be taken by shelter providers such as spacing sleeping mats, providing access to clean and stocked bathrooms.

Q&A from the Office of Healthcare Programs

Questions and Answers from HUD OHP for HUD or FDA-insured healthcare facilities.

Questions to Assist CoCs and Public Health Authorities to Limit the Spread of Infectious Disease in Homeless Programs

This is a list of questions for COC’s and Public Health Authorities to work through how best to care for sheltered and unsheltered persons who exhibit coronavirus-like symptoms. Importantly it also contains questions to guide CoC’s and PH Authorities in providing care and information in ways that don’t trigger mental illness episodes.  

Quick Guide to CDBG Eligible Activities to Support Infectious Disease Response

This is a list of eligible activities under CDBG that can be used in infectious disease response. Includes things like constructing treatment facilities, provide short-term working capital assistance, meals on wheels and more.

Specific Considerations for Public Health Authorities to Limit Infection Risk Among People Experiencing Homelessness

This guidance for Health Authorities dealing with households living in shelters, in encampments, on the street, and in supportive housing.

Eligible ESG costs for Infectious Disease Preparedness

Detailing activities that are eligible for Emergency Solutions Grants Program reimbursement. It covers things like cleaning supplies, cots, room dividers, transportation, and hiring additional staff. It also includes some guidance for planning and applying for these reimbursements.

Infectious Disease Preparedness for Homeless Assistance Providers and Their Partners

This is a webinar covering the basics of COVID-19 and how best to put in place safety measures.

Office of Multifamily Housing Covid-19 Q&A

This Q&A with the Office of MFH Programs includes information on how the office is ensuring Fair Housing obligations will be met, property managers’ options for isolating or utilizing vacant unites for quarantine, disinfecting common spaces and more. Very important!

Office of Single Family Housing Q&A

Details what the FHA is doing with regard to FHA single family loans.

Office of Single Family Housing Info #20-20

Details the temporary partial waiver of servicing requirements regarding face-to-face contact with borrowers.

Q&A on HR Flexibilities and Authorities for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Agency guidelines on telework and HR for HUD satellite offices.

Housing Choice Voucher/PHA/Native American Programs COVID-19 Facts

Describing recommendations to PHA’s regarding HCV, PBV, and Native American Programs. Lists things such as postponing unit inspections, adjusting income guidelines and family shares of rent, and the use of capital, operation, and administrative funds.

Guidance for Section 184 and 184A lenders and services regarding foreclosure and eviction moratoriums related to Presidentially Declared National Emergency. 

COVID-19: Essential Services for Encampments During an Infectious Disease Outbreak

COVID-19: Shelter Management During an Infectious Disease Outbreak

COVID-19 Client Triage Tool: Atlanta, GA CoC Example

COVID-19: How to Screen Clients Upon Entry to Shelter or Opportunity Centers

Office of Multifamily Housing Stakeholders COVID-19 Q&A

HUD has created a Community-level COVID-19 Homelessness Planning & Response Dashboard based on a recent report on the impact of COVID-19 among the country’s homeless population. 

HUD has updated its COVID-19 Multifamily Stakeholder Q&A Document.

HUD released a description of waivers for its CPD Grant Program

The National Healthcare for the Homeless Council released a set of needed actions from the public health and emergency response systems.

Harm Reduction Coalition

The Harm Reduction Coalition created a factsheet to provide information about safer drug use during the COVID-19 Outbreak.

Planning and Preparing for Covid-19 (coronavirus) webpage

A list of resources from HUD and the CDC.

A recording of the USICH/HUD Webinar on COVID-19 Isolation and Quarantine Lessons Learned in Seattle and King County is available online.

The Harm Reduction Coalition created a factsheet to provide information about safer drug use during the COVID-19 Outbreak.

The Northwest ADA Center at UW released this factsheet on ADA accessibility in drive-thru medical sites.

California

The State of California has published their recommended protocol and strategic approaches for COVID-19 response for individuals experiencing homelessness.

The San Francisco Street Sheet released 7 steps they are urging the city to do to address the needs of homeless people and those at risk of becoming homeless as a result of COVID-19. The steps aim to slow the spread of COVID-19 among unhoused populations. 

The San Francisco Department of Public Health has provided interim guidance for medical providers caring for people who use drugs (PWUD) and need to be quarantined. The guide provides general recommendations as well as specific recommendations for various drug types.

Alameda County has released both COVID-19 street outreach and homeless shelter health guidance for the area. Vast resources for both are listed.

San José shared steps the city has taken to mitigate the impact COVID-19 could have on homeless individuals and families. The City is looking to expand temporary shelter capacity, increase the amount of hygiene equipment, and more. 

Nevada County's Homeless Plan follows the guidance provided by the local, State and Federal government as pertains to COVID-19 and Homelessness. As that guidance changes and the situation evolve, the plan will be updated as resources allow.

New York

New York City has released interim guidance for homeless shelters in the area. The document aims to help shelters prevent the spread of COVID-19 and prepare for an outbreak if it were to occur. 

North Carolina

North Carolina has released interim guidance for homeless shelters in the area. The document includes planning, prevention, and recommendations if coronavirus cases were to occur. 

Texas

The Texas Health and Human Services publishes updated communications and media tools for spreading awareness about COVID-19 in Texas. Resources are available in both English and Spanish and are easily shareable. 

Washington

Seattle's Downtown Emergency Service Center has successfully met the CDC guidelines for social distancing throughout their shelter programs while maintaining the same daily availability of 508 beds. They have shared their preparation and action strategies with the public. 

State and Local News

A list of local eviction and foreclosure moratoriums is available here from NLIHC.

The City of Anchorage is debating what to do in order to ensure the safety of individuals experiencing homelessness in the city. Hosting them at local indoor ice arenas were mentioned.

The Arizona state emergency management director stepped down late last week. Her resignation letter criticized moves by Arizona Governor Doug Ducey, saying that his moves to put the Arizona Department of Health Services Director in charge of the state’s efforts made her functions “duplicative.”

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey also announced a new $5 million rental assistance program to assist low income renters during the pandemic.

Arkansas will be freeing up $5 million in Homelessness initiatives as part of an initiative to address the COVID-19 crisis by Governor Asa Hutchinson

Although President Trump quickly granted California Governor Gavin Newsom’s request for a major disaster declaration on Monday, the Administration left out a large amount of individual aid programs.

The COVID-19 pandemic is expected to worsen California’s already extreme shortage of affordable housing.

CalMatters took a look at the five biggest housing-related challenges for the state during the pandemic.

California Governor Gavin Newsom announced a statewide eviction ban for renters affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

Homeless service providers and government officials are scrambling to house the homeless as the COVID-19 pandemic worsens in the state.

Los Angeles

Orange County is currently converting a disused juvenile detention center to host beds for homeless individuals that are experiencing the symptoms of COVID-19.

Sacramento

In Sacramento, the state’s stay at home order has been in place for two weeks, but no new shelter beds have been created. As a result, individuals experiencing homelessness are resorting to living in vacant homes. Sacramento police removed three homeless adults from a vacant home they resided in, citing them for trespass.

San Francisco

Bay Area authorities are working to quickly get individuals experiencing homelessness off the street – moving some 2,000 people in its shelters to new locations throughout the city. 

The San Francisco Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing advised homeless shelters in the city to not accept new residents. It additionally sent out instructions for social distancing, but told providers not to implement them until notified by the agency.

San Francisco is reporting its first case of COVID-19 at a homeless shelter. The individual is in isolation at a hotel room. The city is encouraging homeless residents to pitch tents for protection.

The City of Laguna Woods is “deeply concerned” with Orange County’s decision to place COVID-19 positive individuals inside a hotel in that city.

The COVID-19 pandemic is rapidly increasing California’s efforts to house individuals experiencing homelessness. California has procured 7,000 hotel rooms to temporarily house individuals with COVID-19, COVID-19 symptoms, or are uniquely vulnerable to the disease.

Santa Fe

The City of Santa Fey will be using city and county funds to rent hotel rooms for some of the most at-risk members of its homeless population

Denver

Colorado Coalition for the Homeless is implementing COVID-19 testing at one of its health centers in Denver.

Denver is seeking National Guard assistance in expanding and staffing homeless shelters amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

An individual experiencing homelessness was reported as positive for COVID-19 in New Haven. The individual was ordered to be quarantined in the diagnosing hospital but left the building against hospital guidance. Police found the man after subsequently detaining a different individual experiencing homelessness by mistake. He is currently being held under police guard somewhere in Milford, Connecticut.

The Delaware State Housing Authority is offering eligible households up to $1,500 in direct housing assistance payments through the Delaware Housing Assistance Program. Applications are available here.

Homeless shelter providers in Wilmington are urging officials to provide additional assistance to the area’s homeless shelters and service providers.

DC Government is working to increase space in homeless shelters and provide hotel rooms for some unsheltered residents.

After two people died inside one southeast Washington halfway house in 3 days, residents are becoming concerned that COVID-19 is spreading within the facility.

As Florida’s legislature contemplates returning for a special session Florida housing advocates – DHRC-member Florida Housing Coalition and other members of the Sadowski Coalition - are pushing to preserve the state’s affordable housing trust fund.

Chicago

The City of Chicago will be partnering with five hotels to house quarantined and isolated individuals diagnosed with COVID-19.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced that the Chicago Housing Authority will defer rent for thousands of tenants living in Chicago Public Housing as long as the state’s stay at home order remains in effect. It is also launching a rental assistance program.

Chicago has opened up five additional homeless shelters to house individuals experiencing homelessness in the city. The shelter will house non-COVID-19-positive and non-vulnerable individuals – those that are positive or vulnerable will be housed in hotel rooms.

Homeless services organizations in Iowa are asking for public donations to assist them in setting up temporary homes for individuals currently residing in their shelters.

The Northern Kentucky Convention Center has opened its doors to serve as a social isolation homeless shelter.

New Orleans

New Orleans officials are finalizing plans to move individuals experiencing homelessness out of encampments and into a downtown hotel. Many of the individuals are residents of encampments targeted by city officials for cleaning operations in which multiple residents lost all their belongings

Some landlords in Maine have argued that they should be allowed to restrict guests to rental units, advocates have argued that both renters and landlords should work together to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Mainers without permanent housing are increasingly anxious about staying healthy during the peak period of transmission.

Baltimore

Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young released an emergency response plan to mitigate the effects of the coronavirus’ effect on individuals experiencing homelessness.

A group of homeless advocacy organizations and Baltimore City Council members are stepping up pressure on Baltimore City Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young to greatly expand the city’s efforts rehouse individuals experiencing homelessness.

Service providers will still be allowed to provide food and shelter to people in need under Michigan’s stay at home order. Many organizations in the state are scrambling to deal with the spread of COVID-19.

Detroit

An employee of a transitional housing program for formerly homeless individuals tested positive for COVID-19. Six staff members are now self-quarantining. 

Two people in Detroit’s homeless shelter system have tested positive for COVID-19. They are being separated with 27 others at a new facility created for social isolation.

Service providers and officials in Minnesota are working to increase shelter room and procure hotel rooms for individuals experiencing homelessness. The Minnesota legislature recently approved a $330 million COVID-19 assistance bill which included $26.5 million for homeless services and more.

An individual experiencing homelessness that tested positive for COVID-19 walked out of a St. Louis hospital and sparked an urgent search. St. Louis Human Services quickly reached out to all homeless shelters in the city, informing them of the situation. The man was later found and is staying in an area hotel room.

A homeless couple from Kansas City’s difficulties getting tested for COVID-19 illustrate the issues individuals experiencing homelessness are having in accessing testing and medical care.

Montana Governor Steve Bullock issued a stay home order for the state. The order does not exempt individuals experiencing homelessness – directing them to shelters.

Homeless service providers in Bozeman are preparing for an uptick in housing assistance after Congress passed the CARES Act.

Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak announced an emergency directive placing a moratorium on evictions in that state.

Washoe County Nevada has confirmed its first positive coronavirus test for a member of the homeless community.

After gaining nationwide notoriety for forcing homeless individuals to sleep in a cage-lined parking lot, the City of Las Vegas and Clark County have now promised to have a temporary shelter facility up and running within 6 days. The parking lot shelter was quickly closed after a shelter was successfully decontaminated.

Las Vegas

A Las Vegas parking lot has been turned into a temporary shelter for hundreds of people experiencing homelessness after a man staying at a brick-and-mortar shelter tested positive for coronavirus.

Newark New Jersey is setting up a $6 million fund for residents and businesses losing money during the COVID-19 pandemic.

New York was granted a major disaster declaration this week by President Trump. However, FEMA has not yet responded to questions regarding whether individual assistance or disaster unemployment programs will be offered.

An Albany Housing Authority employee tested positive for COVID-19 the public housing property where the employee resided is now under quarantine.

An op-ed in City Limits by Judi Kende of DHRC-member Enterprise Community Partners, calls for New York to quickly move to create a housing voucher system to combat homelessness.

Over 99 people living in New York City’s homeless shelters have tested positive for COVID-19. The current situation is the result of years of underfunding by the state and city government.

NY1 covered the story of a NYC couple living in their car with COVID-19.

New York City

Residents at NYC homeless shelters are becoming concerned about the cleanliness of shelters in the city, worrying that the lack of sanitation may spread the virus.

With up to 20 individuals living in the same room, residents of NYC’s congregate shelters face a high risk of infection.

In the meantime, the City of New York is posting notices to homeless encampments warning of them to vacate the premises or lose their belongings. The CDC directly advises against such “street sweeps” during the pandemic.

Ohio is newly under a “stay-at-home” order – which exempts individuals experiencing homelessness. However, many shelters in the state do not have the funding to deal with the capacity nor additional requirements to ensure shelters do not become vehicles for transmitting the virus.

An apparent positive case of coronavirus in Toledo has public housing residents on edge. Residents of the building in question have been asked to quarantine.

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler said that the statewide “stay home” order applies to people without homes. It is unclear to what extent police will enforce the rule amongst the homeless population. Oregon Governor Kate Brown’s office said that it would “discourage” police departments from punishing homeless individuals for violating the order but did not prohibit it.

Portland

The iconic Jupiter Hotel in Portland will be housing individuals experiencing homelessness that show COVID-19 symptoms.

Portland and Multnomah County’s joint shelter system is putting together a series of assistance measures to deal with the pandemic – and which will likely cost $3.5 million a month.

Nearly 60 individuals experiencing homelessness in Mecklenburg County are suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19.

DHRC-member Texas Housers called on Texas Governor Greg Abbott to take additional measures to ensure Texans keep their homes amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The governor recently unlocked $11 million in tenant assistance.

Workers at the Austin Resource Center for the Homeless are wearing bandannas to protect against COVID-19

Vermonters are working to isolate members of the state’s homeless population with COVID-19 symptoms.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced an initial $2.5 million in emergency funding to shelter the state’s homeless population.

President Trump approved a major disaster declaration for Washington State unlocking additional resources for Coronavirus response.

Washington’s Department of Commerce is dispensing emergency housing grants to each county in the state. Each county will receive at least $250,000.

Kitsap County in Washington will be opening two additional facilities to assist individuals experiencing homelessness that tested positive for COVID-19 or are awaiting results. One of the centers will be designated for families.

The Utah Economic Response Task Force released a health and economicrecovery plan that includes loan and mortgage freezes

Puerto Rico

Carlos ‘Johnny’ Mendez-Nunez, Speaker of the Puerto Rico House of Representatives praised the latest coronavirus stimulus package in an op-ed in Th Hill and called for Congress to extend the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) Program to the island.

200,000 COVID-19 test kits ordered by Puerto Rico are sitting in a US mainland port awaiting FDA inspection. The tests were scheduled to arrive a week ago.

Updated: 04/06/2020