For weeks, advocates for those experiencing homeless have called on the de Blasio administration to send thousands of homeless New Yorkers to hotels to protect them from COVID-19. On Saturday, the mayor agreed to do that, at least in part.
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The mayor said a total of 6,000 single adult homeless individuals, a third of the population, will be in hotels as of April 20. Already, 3,500 single homeless people are in commercial hotels. The city will be adding thousands more — including seniors and individuals in shelters that are especially crowded.
“Those who will be prioritized across our shelter system for transfer to hotels will include seniors, will include, of course, anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 or who tested positive will be isolated in hotel setting, and anybody in shelters where it’s been difficult to achieve social distancing,” de Blasio said during his new conference.
In many shelters across the city, homeless New Yorkers live in dorm room settings, which make it impossible to socially distance. The new move is supposed to protect the homeless from the spread of coronavirus.