Columbus sets plan to aid homeless during coronavirus pandemic


COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The coronavirus surge has Columbus officials anticipating hundreds of COVID-19 homeless patients will need a place to stay.​

The YMCA Columbus, city officials and the Community Shelter Board announced they’re converting several buildings throughout the city into coronavirus homeless shelters. 

During the surge, the city is anticipating more than 370 patients will need to use the shelters. 

Sue Villilo, who oversees Faith Mission homeless shelter, said this will save lives. ​

“I’ve contacted Grant Hospital the other day and they have five people who are experiencing homelessness in their waiting room and they are waiting for test results. There’s no place to send folks. There’s no good answer for people right who are sick,” said Villilo.

Michelle Heritage, the executive director of the Community Shelter Board, said Columbus is considering many locations for the COVID-19 shelters, but are not disclosing exactly where in order to keep patients safe.

“The first shelter we are opening is in a hotel we have taken over completely. Going forward we will be using various kinds of facilities which could include college dorms, recreation centers, and other congregant settings,” said Heritage.

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