Portable restrooms with hand-washing stations were placed in five Richmond locations on Sunday to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 among the homeless population, according to the Richmond Police Department, which helped in the installations and posted photos of them on Facebook.
Richmond is among several cities partnering with Contra Costa County to place the sanitation stations near homeless encampments in an effort to combat the spread of COVID-19. The Contra Costa County Emergency Operations Center ordered the stations in response to requests for assistance from the cities, which in addition to Richmond, include Antioch, Martinez and Walnut Creek.
Earlier this month, Candace Andersen, chair of the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors, says people who lack housing are particularly vulnerable during the pandemic.
“Without running water, it is very difficult to wash your hands and practice the hygiene needed to reduce your risk of infection,” she said.
In addition, the County is using hotels to place at-risk homeless funds using state emergency assistance dollars. Two hotels have been identified for this purpose in Richmond, according to RPD.
“The funds cannot cover every homeless person in the county; focus is on those who are most vulnerable to COVID-19, such as homeless seniors,” RPD states.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the County has been distributing sanitation supplies—such as hand sanitizer—to people living outdoors to help improve sanitation at homeless encampments.
For more information on the County’s COVID-19 response, click here.