The City of Santa Ana has taken a variety of steps to assist homeless individuals and families during the COVID-19 crisis. The City of Santa Ana is following Federal, State, and County guidelines to help flatten the curve of COVID-19 and will continue to adjust services in the interest of the community.
The Link is a 24-hour emergency homeless shelter facility in Santa Ana that is ADA accessible and serves homeless individuals. The building houses three dormitories for men, women and families, as well as a children’s area, full bathroom facilities and more, which will enable individuals from Santa Ana experiencing homelessness to focus on transitioning into permanent housing and opportunities for employment. The Link Homeless Shelter is operated by Mercy House, a non-profit organization, under a contract with the City.
Below is an update on the adjustments that have been made at the Link and other measures being taken to avoid spreading the coronavirus and protect the homeless.
The Link Takes Steps to Stop the Spread of COVID-19:
• The Link Homeless Shelter is following CDC guidelines that will help stop the spread of COVID-19 by restructuring the shelter to accommodate social distancing.
• Transportation in and out of the Link shelter has been limited to only verifiable appointments, in accordance with the State’s “stay-at-home” order.
• Last week, the City received its allocation of 22 trailers from the State of California to be utilized as an additional resource for The Link shelter.
Outreach to Homeless Individuals:
The City of Santa Ana’s Quality of Life Team (QOLT) as well as its contractor, City Net, continues to conduct outreach to individuals experiencing homelessness. During the daily outreach, individuals are being asked if they believe they have any COVID-19 symptoms and if so, screenings and appropriate measures are taken.
Expanding Housing Options for Homeless Individuals Needing Quarantine or Isolation:
One of the top priorities since the COVID-19 pandemic has been to identify sites that will allow individuals to isolate/quarantine due to COVID-19. Those sites are also available for individuals who are extremely at-risk or vulnerable to the coronavirus. This approach aims to slow the virus’ spread by keeping individuals out of shelters or encampments and lowering the risk of exposure to the community. The local response is evolving rapidly and various sites are being identified to assist not only homeless individuals, but also first responders should the need for quarantine/isolation arise.
For COVID-19 updates and resources from the City of Santa Ana, go to www.santa-ana.org/covid19 and follow @CityofSantaAna on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter; sign up to receive email and text alerts at Nixle.com; download the mySantaAna app; and join Nextdoor.com to connect with neighbors and get City news.