City supports $10,000 to help pay for quarantining homeless people with COVID-19

·2 min read

Because COVID-19 has no boundaries, it hits the homeless population, too.

Hagerstown City Council recently agreed to designate $10,000 to help defray the cost of quarantining homeless individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19.

The funding request came from Horizon Goodwill Industries, which provides a range of services to the community, including helping the homeless.

The surge in COVID-19 cases in the community is also hitting the county's homeless population, said Brooke Grossman, chief mission officer for Horizon Goodwill Industries.

But when homeless individuals test positive for the virus, they cannot be with others in a shelter situation, Grossman said.

Grossman said her organization also recently dealt with a few individuals who had a double challenge: being homeless and contracting COVID-19.

Trone tests positive: Md. congressman tests positive for COVID-19; urges everyone to get vaccinated

On the front lines: Meritus Health implements crisis standard of care due to surge in COVID-19 cases

COVID questions answered: Trone tele-meeting gives public a how-to kit in dealing with ongoing COVID-19 pandemic

Reach of Washington County operates a cold weather shelter for individuals 18 years old and older. The facility is off Franklin Street.

Grossman said her organization has been taking on the cost of properly quarantining some homeless people with COVID-19. But she said her group did not budget money for the expense.

Grossman asked the city on Tuesday to provide funding to help pay for the cost. She initially requested $5,000, but after City Councilwoman Shelley McIntire and Grossman questioned whether that's enough, the council agreed to designate $10,000.

City officials said they plan to fund the request with money from the American Rescue Plan Act, which is federal money designed to help offset costs associated with the pandemic.

Grossman said she also plans to ask the Washington County Board of Commissioners for funding to help quarantine homeless people "because it's a whole community problem."

This article originally appeared on The Herald-Mail: Hagerstown supports $10,000 to help quarantine homeless with virus

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting