With the statewide stay at home order in full effect, the county is working hard to find places for Santa Clara County’s homeless to stay.
As of Monday, the county has secured 215 hotel and motel rooms and has placed 172 people in those units. Hotels involved in this effort include ones in Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, San Jose and Gilroy.
“Rooms are for homeless individuals who were identified as vulnerable if they were to contract the novel coronavirus. The rooms are also for homeless individuals who test positive for COVID-19 and need to isolate,” said a county spokesperson via email.
Among those housed, 13 individuals have tested positive for COVID-19. They are being isolated with their family members.
“Every homeless individual who has tested positive for COVID-19 now has shelter,” said the county spokesperson on Monday evening.
The county says it will not release the names or locations of the hotels and motels involved to respect the privacy of the homeless individuals.
The move is part of a statewide effort to help shelter the portions of the homeless population that are most at risk.
During a press briefing on Saturday, Governor Gavin Newsom said he was proud of the state’s efforts so far.
“We’re now at 7,178 that we now have under our occupancy agreements and we’re getting people off the streets in real time. That can’t happen soon enough,” said Newsom. “We want to continue to get those numbers up…So we can isolate the most vulnerable Californians.”
The rooms are being paid for by the state. The funds were secured through a series of executive orders signed by the Governor in mid-March. The goal is to have 15,000 hotel rooms available statewide. Another executive order halted evictions through the end of May to help make sure people had stable housing.
The state is also securing trailers to help house more homeless individuals. The City of San Jose recently received 105 trailers from the state and are now preparing them for use. San Jose’s safe parking programs are currently operating, allowing for parking 24/7. San Jose has also opened a temporary shelter at the San Jose Convention Center.
As of Monday, all existing shelters in Santa Clara County are open 24/7 and are practicing social distancing; the seasonal shelters are also open. The county has also opened a temporary shelter at the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds for 60 people.
For the latest updates on how Santa Clara County is managing COVID-19, visit www.sccgov.org/COVID19.