19 March 2020
What we are doing
St Mungo’s is following official guidance about coronavirus (COVID-19). The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) issued guidance for providers of hostels or day centres for people experiencing rough sleeping.
Our focus – as always – is on the safety and welfare of our clients, including people who are homeless and people living on the streets.
St Mungo’s houses 2,850 people each night and supports around 30,000 each year. In line with Public Health England (PHE) guidance, in each of our services we are putting in place:
- A handwashing regime and guidance on this for clients, staff and visitors
- A cleaning regime for all accommodation and office projects
- An approach to supporting people who are suspected of having COVID-19.
We are also providing clients with PHE information in different ways, for examples, leaflet and via our website.
The new MHCLG guidance applies in limited circumstances and we are expecting Government to issue further guidance in the coming days. In the meantime we are working with colleagues across the sector to urge the Government to go much further to protect homeless people who are particularly at risk as a result of coronavirus.
We are also working with partners including local councils to implement the guidance and keep people safe.
Howard Sinclair, St Mungo’s Chief Executive, said: “The welfare of our clients is our number one priority and we are reviewing the situation daily. We are doing all we can to keep people who are homeless or rough sleeping informed and as safe as possible.
“I’d continue to urge anyone who is concerned about someone sleeping rough to refer them via StreetLink to help connect them with local services, or to call 999 in a health emergency.”
What can the public do?
- Visit www.mungos.org/coronavirus
- Contact the national referral service StreetLink
- In a health emergency situation call 999
- Follow St Mungo’s on social media for updates @stmungos
How we are supporting our staff
St Mungo’s is following the advice of PHE and our occupational health provider about coronavirus.
We’ve created Q&As for staff, provided posters and information for clients and for members of staff who need to self-isolate we will be paying their full salary.
We know the minimum staffing levels required to keep our services running, which will help if/when more people need to self-isolate or if schools close and this has an impact on our staff’s ability to come into work.