As local businesses and organizations continue to take measures to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus in Ketchikan, social service organizations are continuing operations.
These include First City Homeless Services and Love in Action.
On Sunday, First City Homeless Services released a statement on its social media page explaining the precautions that the organization is taking in regard to COVID-19.
“The Day Shelter and Overnight Warming Center are operating with normal hours and are currently not restricting access to a warm, dry place to seek shelter,” the statement read.
According to the social media statement, the Day Shelter is open from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., and from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.
The shelter is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays, and from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sundays.
FCHS continues to provide meals to participants.
A daily morning meal is offered from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., and lunch is provided at 12 p.m. on Saturdays. An evening meal is provided from 9 p.m. to 9:45 p.m., according to the statement.
“We have take-out containers for all meals and encourage participants to eat their meals outside in a non-congregate location whenever possible,” FCHS stated.
Although FCHS “encourages as much distancing as possible” during meals, individuals with mobility restrictions or those who are unable to walk to another location may eat inside the facility.
The statement also outlined the precautions that FCHS takes in order to keep the facility clean.
This includes reminding participants about frequent hand-washing and social distancing, disinfecting the facility, checking participants for fevers, monitoring those with possible flu-like symptoms and communicating with the Ketchikan Public Health Center.
FCHS stated that one of the precautions being taken against COVID-19 was “providing a designated area, screened with plastic sheeting, for anyone who is feeling unwell to self-isolate while in the facility.”
Additionally, Love in Action will continue to provide services to those in need, according to Executive Director Lisa Scarborough.
“We already do home delivery — that’s what our primary service is — so we home deliver groceries and toiletries and cleaning items and diapers and kitchen items and linens, stuff like that,” Scarborough said during a Monday morning phone interview with the Daily News. “So we haven’t changed any of that.”
Scarborough said that as long as the Love in Action volunteers are willing to carry out the deliveries, those services will continue unaffected by COVID-19.
A change to the grocery services provided by Love in Action became effective Monday, Scarborough said.
“We’ll do groceries once every 30 days, as opposed to once every three months, until the coronavirus is done,” Scarborough explained.
Scarborough said that the change was made possible through an abundance of donations.
Love in Action will not be able to provide clients with bus passes for the Ketchikan Gateway Borough bus system.
The unavailability of bus passes is due to a March 17 announcement from the Ketchikan Gateway Borough Transit Department that suspended the use of the passes to help prevent transmission of illness.
“We will just continue to do what it is we’ve been doing as long as we’re able to do it,” Scarborough said about Love in Action services.