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Emergency shelter sought for the Flathead homeless during COVID-19 outbreak

Posted at 4:01 PM, Apr 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-09 23:21:17-04

KALISPELL — Homeless shelters in the Flathead are taking special precautions for those who need shelter during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Samaritan House executive director Chris Krager told MTN News that those who are homeless are facing serious issues due to the outbreak.

He explained that many rely on libraries and other public spaces for shelter and restrooms, but those places are currently closed. Right now, the Samaritan House has over 60 people sheltering in place.

Krager says they've taken appropriate precautions by keeping beds six feet apart and limiting the number of people in the cafeteria. However, they're looking for another location to house those who exhibit COVID-19 symptoms.

"One area for just unsheltered folks that are healthy," he said. "A second area for folks that may have signs and symptoms but no diagnosis of the virus. And then, a third area for homeless folks that do have the diagnosis of the COVID-19 virus and that we could locate a quarantine area for them."

Krager explained that the new facility will be located in Kalispell and an official announcement is expected within the next several days.