Union Gospel Mission reports positive coronavirus case at shelter

Nov 3 2020, 3:05 pm

Union Gospel Mission (UGM) reported one new case of COVID-19 in a staff member at their Downtown Eastside location on November 3.

UGM confirmed the new case, which is at their 601 Hastings location, via a statement on their website.

“The wellbeing of our guests and community means everything to us. The safety of every single person who passes through our doors is always our top concern, now, more than ever—whether it’s a guest, resident, donor, staff, volunteer, or visitor,” they said.

UGM was made aware of the case on October 26. The staff member was last onsite on October 16. They are currently self-isolating and will not return to work until they have been cleared by health workers to do so, UGM said. One close contact of the staff member is isolating as a precaution.

Health authorities do not consider UGM to be facing a COVID-19 outbreak, the organization said.

The site’s Emergency Management Team is taking a number of precautions to minimize the risk of transmission, including mandating that all staff must wear masks while indoors at UGM, allowing all staff who can work from home to do so, making PPE available for all staff and tenants, and implementing social distancing measures.

“We are dedicated to ensuring the safety of our guests, many of whom rely on UGM for meals, shelter, and safety daily for survival,” they said. “Their lives are on the line, and we will continue to serve them with dignity and respect through new extra measures to keep our community safe.”

Union Gospel Mission previously reported one case of COVID-19 at the location in September.

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