How We Take Precautions

To protect our participants and team members, SELF follows best practices and guidance issued by our partners at the Office of Homeless Services, Philadelphia Department of Public Health, the Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Disability Services, the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control.

At the onset of the coronavirus pandemic and with the health of participants and team members in mind, SELF went into action creating agency-wide mitigation plans and making recommendations to our partners at the Office of Homeless Services and the City of Philadelphia on how to protect the health and safety of individuals experiencing homelessness, both sheltered and unsheltered, and those who deliver emergency housing and related services. With the help of our board, provider agencies, and elected officials, we encouraged our partners at the City to adopt nearly all of our COVID-19 mitigation recommendations including:

  • Adding public restrooms and hand washing facilities for individuals experiencing street homelessness in Center City and Kensington
  • Pre-screening potential-participants during the intake process which includes recording their temperatures and providing the data to providers
  • Providing protective wear to homeless service providers
  • Identifying a quarantine site for people experiencing homeless who have tested positive and/or awaiting test results
  • Implementing a cross-system data collection tool to capture COVID-19 related incidents and hospitalizations
  • Identifying space to isolate participants with known exposure to COVID-19
  • Identifying space to accommodate participants who are over 60 years old and those with serious health and underlying conditions

We are humbled that our thought leadership improve the safety of thousands of individuals experiencing homelessness and those who help them.