FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jun 21, 2021
Jon DeCarmine, Executive Director
Due to an uptick in COVID-19 cases in the emergency shelter, GRACE has halted new entries into the shelter until further notice.
Due to an uptick in COVID-19 cases in the emergency shelter, GRACE has halted new entries into the shelter until further notice. To keep our campus as safe as possible for shelter guests and staff, GRACE has the following protocols in place:
Cafe 131 has been closed for indoor dining since March 2020 and continues to provide meals for carry-out only.
The emergency shelter and all campus services are delivered in accordance with guidelines provided by the Centers for Disease Control, as they have been since March 2020.
The campus has been closed to meal groups and other volunteer groups since March 2020. We continue to provide day services to people without housing, however.
Shelter guests are again being offered COVID-19 vaccines today. This is the sixth vaccination event the shelter has held since January.
The shelter already requires any new guests to take a COVID test prior to entry. These tests are provided at no cost before entering the shelter.
GRACE is currently testing every shelter guest for the second time this week. If a positive case is found, staff immediately implements contact tracing protocols developed in partnership with campus medical service providers.
GRACE is working with local officials to move the most medically vulnerable individuals out of the shelter and into a local motel. This motel is not the same as the location used to isolate COVID-positive individuals.
Custodial staff continue to focus on cleaning and disinfecting high-use, high-contact areas, including the dormitory, computer lab, Cafe, phone rooms, and other public places.
GRACE has worked with medical staff to identify 12 COVID-positive individuals since June 5. These individuals, in partnership with the Alachua County Health Dept., are currently in isolation at a local motel, where GRACE delivers meals, supplies, and other services throughout their isolation period.
We continue to work closely with the Alachua County Health Department, the Alachua Area Medical Reserve Corps, GRACE Healthcare Services, and local leaders to provide the best possible services to our guests. We will provide additional information when shelter entries have resumed.