PUEBLO, Colo. (KRDO) -- Pueblo City Council approved an emergency ordinance to properly quarantine the homeless population who test positive for COVID-19.
More than $15,000 will go to POSADA to operate a non-congregate COVID-19 quarantine shelter, the council decided on Monday.
"Sadly this is the day we've been waiting for and hoping we would not experience," said Kim Bowman, the Executive Director of POSADA.
Bowman says COVID-19 has made its presence known within Pueblo's unhoused population. The exact numbers are unclear, but Bowman says several have already tested positive for the virus.
"There has been minimal testing for the street population [in Pueblo]," said Bowman.
The Executive Director of POSADA says many homeless get tested by walking up to Parkview Medical Center's doors.
POSADA is working with Parkview, the Pueblo County Department of Public Health and Environment, and St. Mary Corwin to make sure all homeless that test positive for COVID-19 get quarantined as soon as possible.
The quarantine recovery shelter, just acquired by POSADA more than a week ago, will include 16 rooms for COVID-affected individuals. The shelter is at 2124 Lake Avenue, which is the old Sunset Motel. The occupants will have access to mini-fridges, microwaves, and regular meals during their recovery.
POSADA has already begun implementing comprehensive security installations so they could introduce non contact communications. Intercom systems will be installed in each room.
Bowman says POSADA has already completed an assessment for immediate use of the building. The original plan was to be operational by December 1, but due to high demand, they are fast-tracking from the original target day to Wednesday evening.
In the mean time, Bowman says current COVID-affected homeless are quarantining in a Pueblo community motel.